IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced the expansion of its operations in Morocco with the opening of an expanded location in the administrative capital, Rabat, effectively doubling its presence in the kingdom. This is IBM’s second subsidiary in Morocco, enhancing the company’s existing Casablanca operation and strengthening IBM’s ability to provide solutions and services to a rapidly expanding base of customers and partners.
The new office in Rabat is part of a broad program of investment that IBM is making across Africa covering the opening of new branches and facilities, the recruitment of new staff and business partners and investment in training, marketing and citizenship programs. Through its geographic expansion initiative, IBM is ramping up its presence in cities and regions where there is significant opportunity for growth and where businesses and government organizations are turning to IT to transform their operations and increase competitiveness.
Morocco has the most dynamic economy in North Africa, with a GDP growth rate of 4.5% in 2011.
“IBM is placing a strong emphasis on investment in Morocco as we recognize the opportunities presented by high growth rates and an increasingly competitive market. By strengthening our presence in Rabat, we are able to offer the most advanced technologies and solutions to our local partners and clients – helping them to do things smarter and more efficiently,” said Abdallah Rachidi Alaoui, IBM General Manager Morocco.
The announcement follows the recent news of the opening of the IBM – Africa Research laboratory in Kenya and a new office in Mauritius. IBM has a direct presence in more than 20 African countries including South Africa, Senegal, Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria.
“The Moroccan Government recognizes the important role that IBM is playing in the development of IT and establishment of Morocco as a modern IT market. We strongly believe that IBM will continue to support the modernization of our IT sector through its technologies and initiatives, and this office opening marks an important commitment to the Moroccan Kingdom,” said Abdelkader Amara, Minister of Industry, Commerce and New Technologies.
One of IBM’s existing clients in Rabat is the Ministry of Economy and Finance. IBM has been a reliable partner for its e-government strategy and the Ministry relies on IBM solutions to support the modernization of its services to citizens and businesses. For example, the Customs and Excise Office (ADII) has implemented an online process for customs clearance and the Tax Department (DGI) as well as the General Treasury of the Kingdom (TGR) have introduced online tax payment systems.
“We have put in place a range of online services, thanks to IBM’s technologies. These services allow citizens and private businesses a significant gain in time and efficiency. Moroccan citizens can pay taxes or income returns online, and a company can clear goods through customs in a simple click,” said Nizar Baraka, Minister of Economy and Finance.
IBM has been serving customers in Morocco since 1932, when IBM installed the first equipment at the Moroccan Statistics Department, and the country also boasts Africa’s first IBM Innovation and Technical Exploration Centers, opened in Casablanca in 2008. Other IBM customers in Morocco include the Ministry of the Interior, Credit Agricole, Barid Al Maghrib (Moroccan Post), AttijariWafaBank, BMCE and BCP.
Earlier this year, a team of IBM experts provided Moroccan government leaders with recommendations for the implementation of a more efficient public transport system for Rabat and nearby Sale and Temara by 2020. Rabat beat 140 other cities around the world to become one of IBM’s Smarter Cities Challenge winners for 2012. As part of the IBM Smarter Cities challenge grant, a team of top employees were sent to live in Rabat for three weeks to create a plan for an improved public transport system compatible with current government initiatives. Rabat was one of three African cities and 33 cities worldwide selected by IBM to receive Smarter Cities challenge grants.
Elsewhere in North Africa, IBM also has locations in Algeria, Tunisia and Egypt, and operations include a Global Process Delivery Center in Cairo, Egypt, and additional strategic locations – including a Technology Development Center, Global Service Delivery Center, and Arabic Competence Center in the Egyptian capital.
The opening of the new Rabat office was recognized this week at a ceremony attended by government officials, customers, and business partners.
 Source : World Bank
Source: African Press Organisation – Press Release – 7 September 2012