from MTHULISI SIBANDA in Johannesburg , South Africa
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – HYPERION Development, the South African and United Kingdom-based startup, is basking in the glory of a historic award by Facebook.
The award hails Hyperion for running the largest online course platform for programming and Computer Science education in Africa.
The Innovation Challenge Award accolade from Facebook builds on a funding award and partnership that Hyperion secured with Google earlier this year, making it the first South African startup financially backed and supported by both Facebook and Google.
The award, run through Facebook’s Internet.org intiative in Africa, aimed to identify “leading examples of online services that provide real value in the categories of education and economic empowerment.”
Riaz Moola, Hyperion’s Founder and Director, says the award will allow them to scale their offerings more rapidly and internationally, accelerating the growth of what is already a profitable and socially impactful business.
“We’re excited to work with Facebook and Internet.org to make software development education and careers open to all,” says Moola.
Hyperion offers part-time, online courses in software development and Computer Science, pairing students with one-on-one expert mentors and tutors from around the continent.
The organisation has rapidly grown to over 10 000 students from 20 countries, and offers a range of introductory and advanced courses in everything from web development to data science and mobile app development.
Hyperion is already one of the largest trainers of popular programming languages such as Java and Python.
For each course it sells, the company offers one low-income or unemployed youth in Africa a free course, a move seen as critical in African economies as South Africa, where youth unemployment stands at over 54 percent.
Hyperion’s paid and free courses allow students to access high-paying careers in the field of software development through the Hyperion Careers platform, bypassing traditional university education.
Hyperion, with offices in Cambridge, Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg, also hopes to finalise additional grant funding from Google, CapaCiti, South African Department of Science and Technology and the TK Foundation to bring the total amount raised to R7 million.
– CAJ News