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Microsoft to host African Start-Ups AI Fest next week

Microsoft Africa president Lillian Barnard.
Microsoft Africa president Lillian Barnard.

Microsoft will host the African Start-Ups Artificial Intelligence (AI) Fest on June 6 in Johannesburg.

Microsoft Africa president Lillian Barnard says the hybrid event will bring together technology company founders, leaders, start-up partners, and customers, while those who are unable to attend in person will be connected virtually.

Barnard says the gathering will provide an opportunity for the continent's start-ups to share their success stories, while up to 10 000 startups will be given access to industry-specific expertise and insights on how best to take their business to the next level with the help of AI.

"There is a need to provide start-ups on the continent with the resources to take their concepts from the drawing board to customers. From AI-enabled tech solutions to advanced digital skills, start-ups need to be given every opportunity to thrive in a highly competitive global market because they are the catalysts for job creation and economic growth in Africa," Barnard says.

She adds that African start-ups have shown resilience and innovation despite economic challenges, emphasising that with the right tech tools, they can scale, enhance productivity, and drive growth.

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