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MTN and Huawei Launch Joint Technology Innovation Lab for Africa

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Vusi Melane
Vusi Melane
Staff Writer


MTN Group, in partnership with Huawei, has officially inaugurated the Technology Innovation Lab at MTN Group’s headquarters, Johannesburg, South Africa. This milestone signifies a significant advancement in their ongoing collaboration across diverse digital fields. Initially announced during MWC 2024, when the parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding, the establishment of the lab aims to further deepen their collaboration, accelerating digital transformation and sustainable development across Africa.

The Technology Innovation Lab is poised to be a catalyst for digital progress in Africa. By fostering cross-regional collaboration, it will stimulate the African digital ecosystem and promote the rapid development, deployment, and adoption of cutting-edge innovative solutions.

Mtn leaders
MTN, Huawei Africa Lab launch

This laboratory plays a pivotal role in MTN’s evolution, transcending the conventional telecommunications operator role to emerge as a premier provider of comprehensive technology services. Research and development within the lab will focus on critical areas such as 5G and 5G-A technologies, artificial intelligence, big data analytics, cloud computing, FTTH, automation, and digital financial services – all of which serve as catalysts for Africa’s digital future.

During a tour of the facilities at the launch event, visitors were exposed to numerous world-class technology use cases spanning Network, Fintech, Information Technology (IT), and Security (IS).

President and Chief Executive Officer of MTN Group, Ralph Mupita says “This lab further demonstrates our commitment to developing relevant, sustainable, and transformative solutions designed specifically for the African context and signifies a strategic investment in Africa’s future – It’s about solutions born in Africa, for Africa. It will catalyse the growth of the digital economy, fostering innovation and generating long-lasting opportunities to empower communities and advance the continent’s development.”

Chief Technology and Information Officer for MTN Group, Mazen Mroué emphasized during the ceremony that “The Technology Innovation Lab is more than just a hub for tech; it’s a platform for collaboration, demonstrating our technology capabilities resulting from the continuous investment made by MTN during the last 30 years. It is a space where the best minds can come together, share ideas, and push the boundaries of what’s possible. By working closely, we can leverage each other’s strengths and the collective brilliance of Africa’s innovators to create solutions that will transform lives. This collaborative spirit is what will unlock the true potential of this lab.”

President of Huawei’s Wireless Solutions, Cao Ming, says “We will collaborate with MTN to create leading products and solutions for the African market, and together explore new business models to lead the industry forward. We believe that the establishment of the innovation lab will accelerate the development of Africa’s digital economy and build a more prosperous and sustainable African continent.”

The Technology Innovation Lab will function as a central hub for experimentation, demonstration, and skill development. It is furnished with state-of-the-art facilities and resources specifically crafted to bolster cutting-edge research and development endeavors. The Lab is accessible to MTNers, partners, and other stakeholders by prior reservation to utilize its facilities. This serves as a testament to the commitment of MTN and Huawei to the future of Africa. It will pave the way for unparalleled innovation, digital inclusion, and economic progress throughout the continent.

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