Google Beefs up African Staff to Push Ads, Apps

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Google has renewed its efforts in the African market by hiring local staff for product marketing and strategic partner development, with an eye on increasing ad sales and hosted application use.

"Google is hiring for the region," said Office Lead for East Africa Joe Mucheru.

This is Google's first wave of hires for the region after establishing an office in Nairobi, Kenya, last year.

The company, Mucheru said, wants to boost Google application use and promote the use of regional advertising in ways that monetize local content and make sure that local information is searchable and useful.

In March last year, Google announced a series of partnerships with African public sector organizations that call for the institutions to receive training and support on hosted applications. The applications include Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Docs and Spreadsheets, instant messaging and word processing, all in use under the domain names of the partner institutions.

For example, Rwandan universities have access to Google Apps Education Edition, while the country's government ministries use Google Apps Standard Edition. The University of Nairobi was the first to be offered Google Apps for Education in Kenya.

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