US-based Sama expands BPO operations in Kenya
California-based Sama – a training-data company- intends to expand Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) operations in Kenya.
The move comes after recent engagements between Sama, the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry and the BPO Association of Kenya.
As a training-data company, Sama focuses on annotating data for artificial intelligence algorithms by providing computer vision solutions that power AI and machine learning models.
In Kenya, the company offers BPO services, including data validation, data curation, image and video annotation, content moderation, and customer service support.
The expansion in Kenya is being planned at a time when BPO is being hailed as one of the hopeful industries that would guide the continent's economic recovery and reconstruction following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Africa has one of the highest rates of unemployment in the world, and the industry is considered to be a driving force behind employment opportunities.
“The local BPO Industry is growing at a steady rate with the BPO Association of Kenya estimating that we will jointly create more than one million jobs against more than $400 million in revenue. This makes the industry an important economic player with contemporary global solutions provision capacity,” says Annepeace Alwala, vice president of global delivery at Sama.
Wendy Gonzalez, CEO of Sama, adds: "Kenya has the potential to become a major player in the global BPO market, and we are excited to be a part of this growth. For over a decade, we have provided individuals who are most likely to be excluded from formal sector jobs.
“Through our purposeful impact hiring process, we connect individuals from low-income backgrounds, those who didn't have the opportunity to pursue education beyond secondary school, and those who, before joining Sama, lived in extreme poverty with fair paying entry-level jobs."