Social media giant Facebook has launched an innovation center in Sao Paulo to train young Brazilians in software development and entrepreneurship.
Nicknamed ‘Hack Station’, the center will include numerous workstations and training rooms for incubating startups.
According to Reuters, which broke the story citing its interview with Facebook’s regional vice president Diego Dzodan, the center will be fully operational by December this year.
The Hack Station will offer a curriculum that includes digital marketing, business management, and computer programming. Facebook wants to train as many as 7,400 people this year.
Once fully operational, the Hack Station may look like Startup Garage, which was launched by the social media firm in Paris in January this year, but its incubation program will be customized to suit the needs of Brazil.
Facebook messaging platform WhatsApp is hugely popular in Brazil, but has bared the brunt of some negative headlines. In March last year, for example, a court in the northeastern state of Sergipe ordered the arrest of Dzodan for WhatsApp’s refusal to hand over call details regarding a person accused of drug trafficking.
The training of people in business management is not a new thing for Facebook in Brazil, either. For the past three years, it has been running an entrepreneurship lab in Heliópolis, an underprivileged neighborhood in São Paulo, where it teaches local residents how to run micro and small businesses. In December 2015, it also replicated the initiative in a slum settlement in Rio de Janeiro.