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Tech News & Podcast | Africa

Africa Digital Hub, Kenya.

Diageo, an international alcoholic beverage company,  has picked Nairobi as its human resource base for its African operations.

The brewer selected Nairobi-based African Business Service Centre (ABSC) over competing rivals from Nigeria, South Africa and Ghana to oversee a portfolio of services including administration and computing payrolls, leaving local units to handle country-specific human resource activities.

According to East African Breweries Limited (EABL), a partly owned subsidiary of Diageo, ABSC was selected based on its long relationship with the brewer – EABL has its financial operations currently outsourced to the business service.

“Kenya was chosen for many reasons including the fact that EABL already hosts ABSC for various finance processes,” EABL MD, Charles Ireland told Kenya’s BusinessDaily

“The aim is to have each market concentrate on its core mandate aiming at efficiency improvement and standardisation that reduces the chances of errors because instructions are coming from a centralised place.”

Diageo is the world largest producer of spirits and a major brewer of beer and wine, selling in more than 180 countries. It manages top alcoholic brands such as Smirnoff, Jonnie Walker, Baileys and Guinness.

It also controls 34 percent of Moët Hennessy, which owns brands such as Moët & Chandon, Veuve Clicquot and Hennessy, grossing annual revenues in excess of $23.46 billion.

The hub will serve Diageo’s key markets in Africa, including Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, and Ghana, and accelerate the company’s digital transformation plans on the continent. It will be headed by Waithera Kabiru, former Head of Media Futures at EABL (East African Breweries Limited), a Kenya-based holding company that also manufactures beverages.

Speaking during the launch, Susan Jones, Diageo’s Global Digital Transformation Lead, emphasized termed the hub as the first of its kind in the region, noting that it would serve Diageo’s digital vision.

“To win the next generation celebration by engaging and delighting consumers with world-class experiences across every consumer physical and digital touch points,” she said.

Kenya has become a favoured destination for global tech giants, owing to its impressive mobile penetration, thriving tech innovation, and a growing middle class.

According to a recent white paper by Visa, the e-commerce sector has experienced astonishing growth rates globally. It is projected to reach a staggering $7 trillion worldwide by 2024. 

In line with this trend, EABL launched its direct-to-consumer e-commerce platform, ke.theBar.com, in 2020, and now plans to expand its reach to other African markets.

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