A report from Google and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) shows that Kenya is among the five countries in Africa with the highest number of software developers.
The e-Conomy Africa 2020 report shows that Africa has about 690,000 devlopers with 50 percent of the professionals concentrated in South Africa, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria and Egypt.
The report shows that 60,000 of the total number of developers are in Kenya, coming in after Nigeria which has 85,000 developers accounting for 12 percent of the continent’s total. South Africa leads the continent about 120,000 developers
In comparison to the West, a large percentage of the start-ups in Africa are at the seed-stage. Most of these are located in South Africa, Egypt, Nigeria and Kenya.
African start-ups have benefited from about $350 million (Sh39 billion) worth of funding towards innovations in the sector in Q1 2020. A study by Briter bridge breaks down the funding per country: South Africa ($112 million), Nigeria ($74 million), Kenya ($62 million), and Egypt ($51 million) leading the way as the top funding destinations.
The report further shows that an average developer in South Africa earns about Sh170,000 while their counterparts in Kenya earn about Sh120,000. However, Kenya and Nigeria seem to offer more job opportunities for the developers.
Interestingly, self-taught developers account for 31 percent of the total and University trained account for 33 percent.
“Combined, online schools and boot-camps which continue to grow, produce 21 per cent of developers. On-the-job training makes up the fifth pathway with 16 per cent; some employers fill open software development roles with developers who have been trained and are already proficient on their preferred platforms,” the report said
Developers in Kenya are also shown to be more interested in and grow from boot camps and online learning. 30 percent of the developers in the country are self taught, 20 percent learn on the job and nine percent can attribute their knowledge to bootcamps and online classes.
Most Universities and colleges in Kenya are also reported to be teaching C++ despite a bigger demand for Java and Scala.
The report shows that at least 88 percent of Kenyan developers are below 34 years, with a third of them aged between 18-24 learning their craft in University.
43 percent of Kenyan developers are aged between 18-24 years while the older generation aged 34 and above account for 45 percent.
Interestingly, Egypt has about 85,000 developers and more than 50 percent are below 24 years old.
The report, which was released last week shows that Africa’s internet economy has the potential to hit $180 billion (Sh19.6 trillion) by 2025.