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Business News of Friday, 8 May 2015

Source: GNA

Country Manager for Microsoft to focus on youth

Mr Derek Appiah, newly appointed Country Manager for Microsoft in Ghana, has said the company would focus on developing employable skills.

A statement from Stratcomm Ghana quoted him as saying that he sees significant potential in Ghana’s young population and is excited that Microsoft has a presence in the country to help unlock this potential.

The statement said Microsoft is also launching a Ghanaian National Youth Employability Portal called TizaaWorks (Everyone Works) on 21 May with partners such as the International Institute for Communication and Development.

It said Mr Appiah, who spent his formative years in Ghana after moving to the country from the UK with his father as a child, holds an engineering degree and an MBA.

The statement said after gaining 20 years’ experience in research, technology, product development, marketing, sales and general management in the UK, he felt an urgency to contribute to the growing economic development in Africa and emerging markets in particular.

It said Mr Appiah spent time working in the UAE and Nigeria, where he worked as an Executive Director at MTN, before moving back to Ghana in 2011 to work at Vodafone Ghana, Logiciel Ghana and finally Microsoft.

“What I really enjoy about working in emerging markets,” Mr Appiah said, “is that you can make a big impact quickly; it’s possible to contribute to the ecosystem in a very real way”.

The statement said Mr Appiah’s goal as Country Manager is to help the company have a more active role in Ghana with the complement of a Ghanaian staff.

It said in keeping with this, he aims to make a significant impact on Ghana’s development. “I believe there is enormous potential for technology to change lives in the emerging world, so this is an opportunity to make a big impact using Microsoft to enable productivity for businesses, government and consumers,” he said.

The statement said Microsoft has partnered with Spectra Wireless to launch Africa’s first commercial service network utilising TV white spaces in Ghana.

It said this would allow students to buy affordable, high speed internet bundles and devices, giving them access to the internet which is often critical to their success.

Mr Appiah said “what I love most about Ghana is its young and vibrant population; they are peace-loving and punch above their weight intellectually, making them the perfect candidates to take the country forward if they can acquire the necessary skills”.