Microsoft has unveiled an online hub that will give South African SMEs access to a range of free products and services from Microsoft and other partners.
The hub, at southafrica.biz4afrika.com, is specifically designed to aggregate all the best resources – both IT and non-IT resources – available to local SMEs. The baseline services offered are free and relevant for SMEs looking to bring their business online and improve their general competitiveness.
The launch offer will enable SMEs to get their businesses online for free for the first year. This includes:
- A free .co.za domain
- A free website
- Free email
- Assorted collaboration tools.
Microsoft COO Kevin Turner said the opening of the Biz4Afrika hub was a strategic component of Microsoft’s 4Afrika Initiative, when the company committed to bringing one million African SMEs online in three years’ time.
The launch follows research by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), which showed that tech-savvy SMEs created twice as many new jobs and grew revenues 15 percentage points faster over the past three years than SMEs using little technology.