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Microsoft and G42 Partner to Build $1bn Data Centre in Kenya

Microsoft is partnering with G42, a top artificial intelligence firm from the United Arab Emirates, on a multiyear project to enhance cloud-computing capacity in East Africa. The project will begin with a 100-megawatt facility in Olkaria, Kenya, which is expected to be operational by 2026. G42 will lead the initial investment, leveraging Olkaria’s surplus geothermal resources, which aligns with Microsoft’s climate goals. The project aims to address power outage issues and support digital technology advancement. Microsoft, G42, and Kenya’s government officials will sign a letter of intent, developed with the help of the US and UAE governments. G42’s CEO Peng Xiao stated that the full project will require up to one gigawatt of electricity. Neither company has revealed the project’s total cost and timeline beyond the $1 billion tag. However, G42’s participation in the project is further proof of the UAE’s intention to enhance its geopolitical influence in Africa with the country investing close to $100 billion in the continent over the past two years.