Microsoft Taps Lillian Barnard to Lead African Operations

Microsoft has announced the appointment of Lillian Barnard as President for Microsoft Africa. Barnard previously served as the Managing Director for Microsoft South Africa, a position that will now be held by Kalane Rampai. According to Microsoft, the appointments are an important milestone in the company’s ongoing efforts to drive impact in Africa at scale.

Lillian Barnard

Barnard is well placed to head Microsoft’s involvement in the continent’s broadscale transformation and will draw on her more than 25 years of experience in the ICT industry. She has held leadership positions in South Africa and abroad at companies such as IBM and Vodacom before her appointment as Managing Director of Microsoft South Africa in 2019.

In a statement, Barnard said, “As African organisations of all sizes, and across every sector, pivot and adapt to changing business and customer needs, they are looking for partners that can accelerate their agility, flexibility and competitiveness, while also cutting costs and driving efficiencies. I am deeply passionate about unlocking the potential for growth using technology to deliver real impact for businesses, communities and economies across the continent.”

Samer Abu-Ltaif, Microsoft Corporate VP & President Central & Eastern Europe, Middle East & Africa, commented on the appointments of Barnard and Rampai, saying that Microsoft is fully committed to Africa’s digital future. “For decades, we have worked tirelessly with governments and organisations across the continent to unlock opportunities for growth and innovation, and the appointments of Lillian and Kalane represent a significant milestone in this journey.”

Kalane Rampai

Rampai, who has more than 20 years’ experience in Management Consulting, will be responsible for Microsoft South Africa. He has extensive industry experience and a proven track record in helping customers transform their businesses, creating sustainable change and stimulating innovation to create a competitive advantage.

“It’s an exciting time to step into this role, and I look forward to advancing the competitiveness of customers and businesses of all sizes and across industries in South Africa and the broader continent, enabling them to benefit from our strong partner ecosystem and best practices in ongoing digital transformation,” said Rampai.

With Barnard and Rampai at the helm, Microsoft says it is confident that it will continue to play a pivotal role in Africa’s economic growth and success. The company aims to create opportunities, empower individuals and businesses, and drive job growth that will benefit the entire region.

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