Showing posts with label Africa. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Africa. Show all posts

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Liquid deploys fiber connecting East-to-West Africa via DRC

Liquid Telecom has launched a land-based fiber network connecting East to West Africa. The coast-to-coast digital corridor follows the completion of Liquid Telecom’s new high-capacity fiber link running 2,600-km across the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The new backbone connects the company’s network on the Atlantic coast at Muanda in the DRC, via Liquid Telecom’s international subsea cable partners. It then runs directly East to Kinshasa and through the DRC onto Lubumbashi in the South, connecting with other cities in between, including Kikwit, Kananga and Kolwezi. The link then crosses the DRC border into Zambia, integrating there with Liquid Telecom’s existing and rapidly expanding pan-African terrestrial fibre network.

Liquid Telecom notes that until recently, no direct, land-based fibre network existed between East and West Africa. Network traffic between Kinshasa in the DRC and Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, for example, was routed via London.

“Liquid Telecom has connected East to West Africa with the most direct digital corridor across the southern hemisphere. We have set a new benchmark and achieved a historic milestone in our vision to create a more connected Africa,” said Nic Rudnick, Group CEO, Liquid Telecom. “By linking the DRC to Liquid Telecom’s rapidly expanding pan-African fibre network and the rest of the world, this transformative infrastructure is creating a foundation for digital growth. Fast, reliable broadband connectivity will advance society, fuel innovation and help champion pan-Africa trade.”

“What Africa has been lacking until now was a direct east to west telecommunications backbone. Liquid Telecom has achieved what African states and organisations have been contemplating for years without success. It deployed a high-capacity fibre optic backbone connecting subsea cables on the East Coast of Africa with cables on the West Coast of Africa. By doing this, it not only considerably shortened the communications route between East and West Africa and contributed to keeping the traffic local, it also laid the groundwork for connecting millions of Africa’s citizens (especially in the DRC) to the internet and the world. This is a significant milestone in continued expansion of modern telecommunications infrastructure across the African continent, supporting governments’ policies aimed at closing the digital divide within their countries and ultimately ensuring ubiquitous connectivity.” Said Dobek Pater, Director at Africa Analysis.

Liquid Telecom to invest US$400 million in deal with Telecom Egypt

Liquid Telecom will invest 8 billion Egyptian Pounds (US$400 million) in Egypt over the next three years as part of its partnership with Telecom Egypt on network infrastructure and data centres.

Specifically, Liquid Telecom will make an initial investment of US$50 million in data centres and cloud services. Liquid Telecom plans to invest an additional US$350 million in broadband and financial inclusion initiatives, as well as high capacity data centres.

Liquid Telecom’s expanding network is almost 70,000km in length and is linked to more than 600 towns and cities in 13 countries across Africa.

The investment was announced at the Africa 2018 Forum. The historical agreement was signed by Ahmed El Beheiry, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Telecom Egypt, and Strive Masiyiwa - Group Executive Chairman of Liquid Telecom’s parent company Econet. It was witnessed by Her Excellency Dr. Sahar Nasr, Egyptian Minister of Investment and International Cooperation and His Excellency, Dr Amr Talaat, The Egyptian Ministry of Communications and Information Technology.

According to the Group Executive Chairman of Liquid Telecom’s parent company Econet, Mr Strive Masiyiwa, the next mission is to complete a link between Cairo and Dakar Senegal through Sudan, Chad, and Nigeria, as well as the rest of West Africa. “We have already crossed Africa from East to West through Sudan and Chad. We are at the Nigerian border and we expect to reach Abuja by the end of January in time for the AU Summit. We want to reach Dakar before President El-Sisi finishes his term,” he said.

Mr Masiyiwa also acknowledged the support of President Kagame, adding: “It would have been impossible to reach this far so quickly without his support. He adopted this initiative as a key project during his tenure and has been highly supportive throughout its development. We know President El-Sisi will help us take it to the next level because he understands the vision of Africa.” Mr Masiyiwa expressed his appreciation for leadership support across the continent. He said the ‘One Africa’ model could encourage other entrepreneurs to build projects in complementary sectors, such as rail and power. “We need to push the linkage of our continental power grids, and also rail and air transportation. Now is the time for bold initiatives to build intra African trade and investment.”



Telecom Egypt + Liquid Telecom link Cairo-to-Cape Town terrestrial fiber

Telecom Egypt and Liquid Telecom signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to complete the first terrestrial fibre network stretching all the way from Cape Town, South Africa, to Cairo, Egypt.

Under the MoU, Liquid Telecom will link its network from Sudan into Telecom Egypt’s network via a new cross border interconnection – bringing together a 60,000km network that runs from Cape Town, through all the Southern, Central, and Eastern African countries, and has now reached the border between Sudan and Egypt.

As part of the strategic partnership, Liquid Telecom and Telecom Egypt will share network infrastructure and explore further areas of collaboration, including joint network services, a peering arrangement and a voice interconnection agreement.

The Cape to Cairo network - often referred to as “the One Africa” broadband network - has been in the making for over ten years and serves some of the largest global companies with some of the fastest network speeds on the continent.

“Completing our vision of building a single network running on land, all the way from Cape to Cairo is a historic moment for the company and for a more connected Africa. This network not only represents a remarkable engineering achievement that has overcome some of the most challenging distances and terrains on the continent, but it is also supporting the rise of Africa’s digital economies,” said Strive Masiyiwa, Founder and Executive Chairman of Econet.

Liquid Telecom acquires South Africa's Neotel

Liquid Telecom, a unit of South Africa–based Econet Global has announced that it has completed the acquisition of South African network operator Neotel for approximately ZAR 6.55 billion (approximately $491 million), further expanding its position as a pan-African telecoms company.

Liquid Telecom acquired Neotel from India's Tata Communications and minority shareholders led by Nexus Connexion. Liquid Telecom joined with 30% equity partner Royal Bafokeng Holdings (RBH), a community-based South African investment group, for the acquisition, which received regulatory approval from the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) in December 2016. South Africa's Competition Commission approved the deal in October.

Established in 2006, Neotel has invested an estimated ZAR 7 billion in its network, deploying national backbone fibre connecting the top 40 cities and towns in South Africa and to over 5,000 businesses. Neotel operates a major, MEF-certified Ethernet network, while Liquid Telecom is a leading provider of Carrier Ethernet services with MEF Carrier Ethernet 2.0 (CE 2.0) services certification.

Neotel also operates redundant backhaul fibre to landing stations with access to all five of the international subsea cables serving South Africa - SAT-3, SAFE, SEACOM, EASSy and WACS. It was noted that Liquid Telecom owns significant international subsea capacity, and is currently building a subsea cable linking the east coast of Africa, Liquid Sea

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Nokia supplies GPON to Spectranet in Nigeria

Spectranet, Nigeria’s largest Internet Service Provider, will bring high-speed access to customers in Lagos and Abuja by deploying Nokia's GPON solution as part of an extensive FTTH rollout. The deployment includes the Nokia 7362 ISAM DF-16GW and the Nokia 7368 ISAM ONTs.

Spectranet has been providing wireless broadband services in Nigeria since 2013 using LTE.

Ajay Awasthi, Chief Executive Officer at Spectranet, said: “In today’s digital economy, our customers increasingly seek high-speed internet access to use applications like streaming ultra HD videos and online gaming. With Nokia’s GPON solution, we will be able to offer customers new ultra-broadband services that create a superior customer experience in the home and office.”

Sunday, June 30, 2019

Google announces Equiano cable from Portugal to South Africa

Google unveiled plans for new private subsea cable connecting Lisbon, Portugal and Cape Town, South Africa with branching units along the west coast of Africa.

The Equiano subsea cable, which is named for Olaudah Equiano, a Nigerian-born writer and abolitionist who was enslaved as a boy, will include a branching unit to Nigeria.

Google plans to use state-of-the-art space-division multiplexing (SDM) technology to achieve approximately 20 times more network capacity than the last cable built to serve this region.

The cable will be the first to incorporate optical switching at the fiber-pair level, rather than the traditional approach of wavelength-level switching. Google says this design will greatly simplify the allocation of cable capacity.

Equiano is fully funded by Google. Alcatel Submarine Networks was awarded a contract in Q4 2018. The first phase of the project, connecting South Africa with Portugal, is expected to be completed in 2021.

https://cloud.google.com/blog/products/infrastructure/introducing-equiano-a-subsea-cable-from-portugal-to-south-africa

Google to build private "Dunant" cable from Virginia to France

Google is planning a new transatlantic subsea cable system linking the east coast of the United States to Europe to bolster its global network.

Dunant, which is named in honor of Swiss businessman and humanitarian Henri Dunant, will be a four-fiber pair cable system spanning over 6,400km from Virginia Beach to the French Atlantic coast.

Google has selected TE SubCom to build the Dunant submarine cable system. Activation is expected in late 2020.

Google said it continues to consider three options when considering its subsea connectivity needs: (1) purchasing capacity on existing cables (2) joining a consortium to build new cables (3) building a private cable system. In this case, there is a growing need for capacity between its cloud data center regions in Virginia and Belgium.

“We are proud to be working with Google on this important cable system and to be helping to increase internet performance for all,” said Sanjay Chowbey, president of TE SubCom. “The Dunant cable system will be built using SubCom’s industry-leading A1 cable family, which is optimized for projects compatible with higher DCR. As a leading supplier of submarine cable systems, we look forward to continuing to work with our global partners to create more accessible and faster internet access.”

Henri Dunant was the founder of the Red Cross and recipient of the first Nobel Peace Prize.



https://blog.google/products/google-cloud/delivering-increased-connectivity-with-our-first-private-trans-atlantic-subsea-cable/
http://www.te.com/global-en/about-te/news-center/subcom-dunant-cable-system-google-071618.html

Google commissions own subsea cable from CA to Chile

TE Subcom has been awarded a contract by Alphabet, the parent company of Google, to build a subsea cable from California to Chile. A ready-for-service date is expected in 2019.

The Curie Submarine Cable will be a four fiber-pair subsea system spanning over 10,000 km from Los Angeles to Valparaiso. It will include a branching unit for future connectivity to Panama.

The project is believed to be the first subsea cable to land in Chile in 20 years.

Google joins Havfrue and HK-G subsea cable projects

Google announced its participation in the HAVFRUE subsea cable project across the north Atlantic and in the Hong Kong to Guam cable system, both of which are expected to enter service in 2019.

In addition, Google confirmed that it is on-track to open cloud regions (data centers) in the Netherlands and Montreal this calendar quarter, followed by Los Angeles, Finland and Hong Kong.

HAVFRUE is the newly-announced new subsea cable project that will link New Jersey to the Jutland Peninsula of Denmark with a branch landing in County Mayo, Ireland. Optional branch extensions to Northern and Southern Norway are also included in the design. The HAVFRU system will be owned and operated by multiple parties, including Aqua Comms, Bulk Infrastructure, Facebook, Google and others. Aqua Comms, the Irish cable owner/operator and carriers’ carrier, will serve as the system operator and landing party in U.S.A., Ireland, and Denmark. Bulk Infrastructure of Norway will be the owner and landing party for the Norwegian branch options. The HAFVRUE subsea cable system will be optimized for coherent transmission and will offer a cross-sectional cable capacity of 108Tbps, scalable to higher capacities utilizing future generation SLTE technology. SubCom will incorporate their Wavelength Selective Switching Reconfigurable Optical Add Drop Multiplexer (WSS-ROADM) for flexible wavelength allocation over the system design life. It is the first new cable system in almost two decades that will traverse the North Atlantic to connect mainland Northern Europe to the U.S.A. TE Subcom is the system supplier.

The 3,900 kilometer Hong Kong - Guam Cable system (HK-G) will offer 48 Tbps of design capacity when it comes into service in late 2019. It features 100G optical transmission capabilities and is being built by RTI Connectivity Pte. Ltd. (RTI-C) and NEC Corporation with capital from the Fund Corporation for the Overseas Development of Japan's ICT and Postal Services Inc. (Japan ICT Fund), along with syndicated loans from Japanese institutions including NEC Capital Solutions Limited, among others. In Hong Kong, the cable is slated to land in Tseung Kwan O (TKO) and will land in Piti, Guam at the recently completed Teleguam Holdings LLC (GTA) cable landing station. HK-G will land in the same facility as the Southeast Asia - United States Cable System (SEA-US).

Google also noted its direct investment in 11 cables, including those planned or under construction:

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Tigo Senegal picks Ericsson for network modernization - 1,000+ sites

Tigo Senegal has selected Ericsson for its nationwide network modernization project, which will bring LTE across the country. The 3-year contract covers upgrades to over 1,000 existing sites using the latest Ericsson Radio System (ERS) technology. The project will also expand Tigo’s mobile backhaul network with Ericsson’s MINI-LINK.

Ericsson will also provide Cloud Packet Core and Cloud Data Management and Policy solutions for the modernization of Tigo’s core network to reduce OPEX and simplify the introduction of new user services. Additional solutions include Ericsson’s Mobile Packet Backbone Network (MPBN) and OSS migration to Ericsson Network Manager.

Mass Thiam, CEO of Tigo, says: “Senegal is on the brink of a huge digital transformation which will open up new business opportunities and revitalize the nation’s economy. To enable and speed up this process, Tigo, with Ericsson as its partner, is rapidly upgrading our legacy network systems to deliver the quality, capacity and overall network performance that our enterprise and subscriber customers demand.”

Rafiah Ibrahim, Head of Ericsson Middle East and Africa says: “Ericsson’s best-in-class LTE solutions will secure Tigo’s network performance and quality while delivering a differentiated experience to their subscribers.  By improving both indoor and outdoor network coverage, Tigo will be able to deliver digital services including mobile data and mobile financial services across the entire Senegalese market.”

Monday, December 10, 2018

Liquid Telecom to invest US$400 million in deal with Telecom Egypt

Liquid Telecom will invest 8 billion Egyptian Pounds (US$400 million) in Egypt over the next three years as part of its partnership with Telecom Egypt on network infrastructure and data centres.

Specifically, Liquid Telecom will make an initial investment of US$50 million in data centres and cloud services. Liquid Telecom plans to invest an additional US$350 million in broadband and financial inclusion initiatives, as well as high capacity data centres.

Liquid Telecom’s expanding network is almost 70,000km in length and is linked to more than 600 towns and cities in 13 countries across Africa.

The investment was announced at the Africa 2018 Forum. The historical agreement was signed by Ahmed El Beheiry, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Telecom Egypt, and Strive Masiyiwa - Group Executive Chairman of Liquid Telecom’s parent company Econet. It was witnessed by Her Excellency Dr. Sahar Nasr, Egyptian Minister of Investment and International Cooperation and His Excellency, Dr Amr Talaat, The Egyptian Ministry of Communications and Information Technology.

According to the Group Executive Chairman of Liquid Telecom’s parent company Econet, Mr Strive Masiyiwa, the next mission is to complete a link between Cairo and Dakar Senegal through Sudan, Chad, and Nigeria, as well as the rest of West Africa. “We have already crossed Africa from East to West through Sudan and Chad. We are at the Nigerian border and we expect to reach Abuja by the end of January in time for the AU Summit. We want to reach Dakar before President El-Sisi finishes his term,” he said.

Mr Masiyiwa also acknowledged the support of President Kagame, adding: “It would have been impossible to reach this far so quickly without his support. He adopted this initiative as a key project during his tenure and has been highly supportive throughout its development. We know President El-Sisi will help us take it to the next level because he understands the vision of Africa.” Mr Masiyiwa expressed his appreciation for leadership support across the continent. He said the ‘One Africa’ model could encourage other entrepreneurs to build projects in complementary sectors, such as rail and power. “We need to push the linkage of our continental power grids, and also rail and air transportation. Now is the time for bold initiatives to build intra African trade and investment.”



Telecom Egypt + Liquid Telecom link Cairo-to-Cape Town terrestrial fiber

Telecom Egypt and Liquid Telecom signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to complete the first terrestrial fibre network stretching all the way from Cape Town, South Africa, to Cairo, Egypt.

Under the MoU, Liquid Telecom will link its network from Sudan into Telecom Egypt’s network via a new cross border interconnection – bringing together a 60,000km network that runs from Cape Town, through all the Southern, Central, and Eastern African countries, and has now reached the border between Sudan and Egypt.

As part of the strategic partnership, Liquid Telecom and Telecom Egypt will share network infrastructure and explore further areas of collaboration, including joint network services, a peering arrangement and a voice interconnection agreement.

The Cape to Cairo network - often referred to as “the One Africa” broadband network - has been in the making for over ten years and serves some of the largest global companies with some of the fastest network speeds on the continent.

“Completing our vision of building a single network running on land, all the way from Cape to Cairo is a historic moment for the company and for a more connected Africa. This network not only represents a remarkable engineering achievement that has overcome some of the most challenging distances and terrains on the continent, but it is also supporting the rise of Africa’s digital economies,” said Strive Masiyiwa, Founder and Executive Chairman of Econet.

Liquid Telecom acquires South Africa's Neotel

Liquid Telecom, a unit of South Africa–based Econet Global has announced that it has completed the acquisition of South African network operator Neotel for approximately ZAR 6.55 billion (approximately $491 million), further expanding its position as a pan-African telecoms company.

Liquid Telecom acquired Neotel from India's Tata Communications and minority shareholders led by Nexus Connexion. Liquid Telecom joined with 30% equity partner Royal Bafokeng Holdings (RBH), a community-based South African investment group, for the acquisition, which received regulatory approval from the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) in December 2016. South Africa's Competition Commission approved the deal in October.

Established in 2006, Neotel has invested an estimated ZAR 7 billion in its network, deploying national backbone fibre connecting the top 40 cities and towns in South Africa and to over 5,000 businesses. Neotel operates a major, MEF-certified Ethernet network, while Liquid Telecom is a leading provider of Carrier Ethernet services with MEF Carrier Ethernet 2.0 (CE 2.0) services certification.

Neotel also operates redundant backhaul fibre to landing stations with access to all five of the international subsea cables serving South Africa - SAT-3, SAFE, SEACOM, EASSy and WACS. It was noted that Liquid Telecom owns significant international subsea capacity, and is currently building a subsea cable linking the east coast of Africa, Liquid Sea.

Over the coming months, Liquid Telecom stated that it plans to make extensive upgrades and expansions to Neotel's network to enable improved high-speed connectivity and deliver services to more customers across South Africa. Liquid Telecom also plans to invest in Neotel's data centre capabilities, which include two Tier 3 facilities in Johannesburg and Cape Town, adding to its existingEast Africa Data Centre in Nairobi, Kenya.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Telecom Egypt + Liquid Telecom link Cairo-to-Cape Town terrestrial fiber

Telecom Egypt and Liquid Telecom signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to complete the first terrestrial fibre network stretching all the way from Cape Town, South Africa, to Cairo, Egypt.

Under the MoU, Liquid Telecom will link its network from Sudan into Telecom Egypt’s network via a new cross border interconnection – bringing together a 60,000km network that runs from Cape Town, through all the Southern, Central, and Eastern African countries, and has now reached the border between Sudan and Egypt.

As part of the strategic partnership, Liquid Telecom and Telecom Egypt will share network infrastructure and explore further areas of collaboration, including joint network services, a peering arrangement and a voice interconnection agreement.

The Cape to Cairo network - often referred to as “the One Africa” broadband network - has been in the making for over ten years and serves some of the largest global companies with some of the fastest network speeds on the continent.

“Completing our vision of building a single network running on land, all the way from Cape to Cairo is a historic moment for the company and for a more connected Africa. This network not only represents a remarkable engineering achievement that has overcome some of the most challenging distances and terrains on the continent, but it is also supporting the rise of Africa’s digital economies,” said Strive Masiyiwa, Founder and Executive Chairman of Econet.

“This MoU is a great step in our strategy to penetrate the African market and avail Telecom Egypt’s most advanced technology and global infrastructure services to customers across Africa. We look forward to working alongside Liquid Telecom to develop new network services and products that will help stimulate intra-regional trade,” said Ahmed El Beheiry, Telecom Egypt’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

One Africa Network envisions a regional traffic exchange

The Smart Africa Alliance (SAA) and Global Voice Group (GVG) have agreed to build an African Regional Traffic Exchange and Financial Settlement (ARTEF) Platform as part of the One Africa Network (OAN) initiative.

The idea is to establish a harmonized African telecommunications framework that would give African countries the potential to make significant leaps in development through lower intra-region communication costs. For consumers, the goal would be to lower the costs of communications by eliminating roaming charges. This would boost intra-African traffic, leading to more trade and economic growth. Calls from one OAN country to another would not have to leave the OAN zone to incur international changes.

As Patrice Baker, CEO of GVG, pointed out: “The OAN is a major initiative for the socio-economic development of Africa. The idea of a free roaming zone and the necessity of establishing a harmonized African telecommunications framework has been discussed for many years across the continent. It is time now for action. As a technical partner and provider of the traffic exchange platform, GVG is strongly committed to assist SAA members in the successful implementation of the OAN.”

http://smartafrica.org
https://www.globalvoicegroup.com

Sunday, January 7, 2018

DARE subsea cable to link East Africa with 30 Tbps of capacity

Construction activity for the Djibouti Africa Regional Express (DARE) submarine cable system is now underway as supply contract with TE Subcom is now in force.

The 5,400km DARE submarine cable system will deliver up to 30 Tbps of subsea capacity for East Africa and the Horn of Africa. The 100G capable system will connect Djibouti (Djibouti) and Mombasa (Kenya), with branches to three major coastal cities in Somalia, respectively Mogadishu, Berbera, and Bosaso. An additional optional branch is available to Dar Es Salaam (Tanzania)

The DARE consortium is composed of Djibouti Telecom and its partners in Somalia and Kenya

“Our selection as supplier demonstrates our commitment to the regional short-haul marketplace and we are very pleased to partner on the DARE project to deliver this system that will stimulate growth in the region by providing robust, reliable and low-latency connectivity,” said Sanjay Chowbey, President, TE SubCom. “TE SubCom is proud that DARE has entrusted our team with the responsibility to make their project a reality.”




Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Bharti Airtel to acquire Tigo Rwanda

Bharti Airtel Limited agreed to acquire Millicom's Rwanda mobile network, which operates under the Tigo Rwanda brand. The companies said the price is approximately 6x 2017 adjusted EBITDA, payable over two years, consisting of a mix of cash, vendor loan note and earn out. Media sources put the price at about US$6 billion.

Tigo Rwanda has about 3.25 million customers. By integrating the assets with its own Airtel Rwanda, Bharti will hold approximately 40% of the market, behind MTN.

Airtel Africa also has operations in 15 other countries, including some acquired properties in Uganda (Warid), Congo B (Warid), Kenya (yu Mobile), and Ghana (Millicom).

Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman of Bharti Airtel stated: "Airtel has taken proactive steps in Africa to consolidate and realign the market structure in the last few remaining countries where its operations are lagging on account of lower market share and presence of too many operators. Airtel and Tigo have already merged their operations to create a strong viable entity in Ghana. Today, it has taken yet another important step to acquire Tigo Rwanda to become a profitable and a strong challenger in a two-player market."

Mauricio Ramos, CEO of Millicom, commented: "The sale of our business in Rwanda is in line with our strategy to focus on providing advanced fixed and mobile data services in Latin America. We are very grateful to the government of Rwanda for their support throughout the last eight years, which allowed us to extend digital inclusion to thousands of Rwandans."

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Huawei Marine Selected for Cameroon-Brazil Subsea cable

Huawei Marine, the joint venture between Huawei Technologies and UK-based Global Marine Systems, announced it has been contracted by China Unicom and Cameroon government-owned infrastructure operator Camtel to construct the South Atlantic Inter Link (SAIL), marking the official commencement of the SAIL cable system implementation phase.

Funded with investment from China Unicom and Camtel, the SAIL system will link Cameroon and Brazil and span around 6,000 km. The cable system will comprise 4 fibre pairs and offer a design capacity of 32 Tbit/s based on Huawei Marine’s advanced 100 Gbit/s technology.

The SAIL system will be the first direct access cable to connect Africa and South America, and on completion is designed to provide a reliable, high-quality intercontinental communications infrastructure between the two developing regions.



  • Huawei Marine originally announced that it had been commissioned to construct the Cameroon-Brazil cable system, initially called Cameroon-Brazil Cable System (CBCS), in October 2015.
  • Also in 2015, Huawei Marine announced it had started marine installation of the Nigeria-Cameroon Submarine Cable System (NCSCS), Cameroon's first wholly-owned submarine cable and part funded by the Cameroon government. Spanning around 1,100 km, the NCSCS directly connects Kribi in Cameroon with Lagos in Nigeria and will deliver 12.8 Tbit/s of capacity.
  • Camtel states that to date it has deployed more than 8,000 km of fibre that connects the ten regional chief towns in Cameroon, as well as around 60 divisional/sub-divisional chief towns and hundreds of rural communities; it also provides connectivity to CEMAC region countries including Chad. The company is aiming to build a network spanning over 20,000 km.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Orange launches brand in Liberia following acquisition of Cellcom

France-based global telco Orange announced the launch of its brand in Liberia in West Africa, so that effective immediately, Cellcom Liberia becomes Orange Liberia, expanding the group's presence in the region.

The re-branding follows the acquisition by Orange of the Liberian operator Cellcom, which was implemented through its subsidiary Orange Côte d’Ivoire and completed in early April 2016.

Orange noted that, in line with its Essentials2020 strategic program, it is focused on building up its presence in the West Africa region as a strategic priority for the group's development, based on the anticipated significant growth potential the region offers.

Following the re-branding, Orange Liberia becomes part of a major international telecoms group. Orange noted that it will provide marketing expertise and technical capabilities to help strengthen the operator's established network and enhance customer service in Liberia.

Orange Liberia served more than 1.6 million customers as of the end of February 2017, making it the leading mobile operator in the country in terms of subscribers. Founded in 2004, the mobile operator was the first in Liberia to launch 3G (HSPA+) services in 2012, followed by the launch of 4G LTE services in 2016. Orange plans to continue to invest in the development of its network to bolster the operator's position as market leader.

Orange noted that, with a population of 4.6 million and a relatively low mobile penetration rate of 70% of the population, Liberia offers growth potential. To support this development, the Orange intends to enhance the quality of access by investing in network expansion. Specifically, it added 39 sites in 2016 and plans to add a further 65 sites in 2017 as part of efforts to accelerate broadband deployment and expand 4G penetration across the country.

In addition, the company aims to enhance Internet quality in Liberia by providing access to Orange Group's submarine and international cable networks in the region. This will provide Orange Liberia with access to two additional connection points, in Abidjan and Paris, that are expected to increase network capacity four-fold.

Orange has a present in 21 countries across Africa and the Middle East, where it serves a total of over 120 million customers. Orange Money, the company's money transfer and mobile financial services offering, is available in 17 countries with more than 31 million customers.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Vodafone to transfer 35% interest in Safaricom to Vodacom

Vodafone Group announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Vodafone International Holdings B.V., has agreed to transfer part of its indirect shareholding in Safaricom, serving around 28 million subscribers in East and Central Africa, to Vodacom Group, its sub-Saharan Africa subsidiary.

Under the terms of the transaction, Vodafone will exchange a 35% indirect interest in Safaricom for 226.8 million new ordinary Vodacom shares. The transaction, which is valued at approximately Euro 2,361 million based on Vodacom's closing share price on May 12th, 2017, will increase Vodafone's ownership in Vodacom from 65% to 70%. Vodafone will continue to hold a 5% indirect stake in Safaricom following the transfer, in addition to the indirect interest held via Vodacom.

As part of the transaction, Vodafone Group has provided assurances to the government of Kenya relating to the ongoing operation of the long standing partnership between Safaricom, the Vodafone Group and the Kenyan Government.

The transaction is expected to allow Vodafone Group to streamlines and simplify the management of its sub-Saharan African holdings and to strengthen alignment and cooperation between Safaricom and Vodacom throughput the region and internationally. More specifically, Vodacom will strengthen its position in the Kenyan market.

Vodafone currently holds a 40% indirect interest in Safaricom through wholly-owned subsidiary Vodafone Kenya (VKL). Vodacom has agreed to acquire an 87.5% shareholding in VKL, representing a 35% indirect interest in Safaricom; Vodafone will retain the remaining 12.5% shareholding in VKL, representing a 5% indirect interest in Safaricom.

As part of the transaction, Vodacom is to issue 226.8 million new ordinary shares to Vodafone, which values the effective 35% indirect interest in Safaricom at approximately Euro 2,361 million. The implied exchange ratio of 1.62 new Vodacom shares for every 100 Safaricom shares compares to an implied exchange ratio of 1.56 based on the 90 day VWAP, 1.63 based on the 180 day VWAP and 1.72 based on the closing prices on May 12th.

After closing of the transaction, Vodafone will continue to report direct and indirect holdings in Safaricom under the equity method. Vodafone noted that closing of the transaction is subject to conditions including approvals from Vodacom minority shareholders, from the Financial Surveillance Department of the South African Reserve Bank and confirmation from the Kenya Capital Markets Authority that the transaction does not obligate Vodacom to make a mandatory bid for Safaricom.


The transaction is currently expected to close in the third quarter of 2017.


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Liquid Telecom acquires South Africa's Neotel

Liquid Telecom, a unit of South Africa–based Econet Global has announced that it has completed the acquisition of South African network operator Neotel for approximately ZAR 6.55 billion (approximately $491 million), further expanding its position as a pan-African telecoms company.

Liquid Telecom acquired Neotel from India's Tata Communications and minority shareholders led by Nexus Connexion. Liquid Telecom joined with 30% equity partner Royal Bafokeng Holdings (RBH), a community-based South African investment group, for the acquisition, which received regulatory approval from the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) in December 2016. South Africa's Competition Commission approved the deal in October.

Established in 2006, Neotel has invested an estimated ZAR 7 billion in its network, deploying national backbone fibre connecting the top 40 cities and towns in South Africa and to over 5,000 businesses. Neotel operates a major, MEF-certified Ethernet network, while Liquid Telecom is a leading provider of Carrier Ethernet services with MEF Carrier Ethernet 2.0 (CE 2.0) services certification.

Neotel also operates redundant backhaul fibre to landing stations with access to all five of the international subsea cables serving South Africa - SAT-3, SAFE, SEACOM, EASSy and WACS. It was noted that Liquid Telecom owns significant international subsea capacity, and is currently building a subsea cable linking the east coast of Africa, Liquid Sea.

Over the coming months, Liquid Telecom stated that it plans to make extensive upgrades and expansions to Neotel's network to enable improved high-speed connectivity and deliver services to more customers across South Africa. Liquid Telecom also plans to invest in Neotel's data centre capabilities, which include two Tier 3 facilities in Johannesburg and Cape Town, adding to its existingEast Africa Data Centre in Nairobi, Kenya.

In addition, the Neotel operation will be integrated with Liquid Telecom's pan-African network and extensive fibre footprint to provide access to over 40,000 km of cross border, national and metro fibre infrastructure serving 12 countries, giving Liquid Telecom enhanced reach across Eastern, Central and Southern Africa.

Earlier in February, Liquid Telecom announced the completion of its acquisition of Tanzania’s leading ISP Raha. Liquid Telecom noted the acquisition enhanced its East Africa Fibre Ring, which connects Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania, with direct connectivity to international subsea cables. Raha operates a 400 km metro network serving the central business district of Dar es Salaam and other areas of the Tanzanian capital, and has a data centre in the city. Raha provides over 1,500 businesses, plus a growing base of retail customers, with a range of connectivity solutions, including fibre, satellite, WiMAX and WiFi.

https://www.liquidtelecom.com/news-events/news/1017-neotel-officially-becomes-part-of-the-pan-african-liquid-telecom-group.html

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Eutelsat/Facebook AMOS-6 Satellite Destroyed on Launch Pad

SpaceX suffered a launch pad anomaly during a pre-launch test at Cape Canaveral, Florida, leading to the explosion of a Falcon 9 rocket and the destruction of its payload, Eutelsat's AMOS-6 satellite.

AMOS-6 was a Ka-band geostationary satellite configured with high gain spot beams for covering large parts of West, EAast and Southern Africa. The satellite was designed for community and Direct-to-User Internet access using affordable, off-the-shelf customer equipment.


Eutelsat Signs Facebook for AMOS-6 Satellite over Africa

Eutelsat Communications and Facebook announced a plan to leverage satellite technologies to get more Africans online.

Under a multi-year agreement with Spacecom, the two companies will utilize the entire broadband payload on the upcoming AMOS-6 satellite and will build a dedicated system comprising satellite capacity, gateways and terminals. In providing reach to large parts of Sub-Saharan Africa, Eutelsat and Facebook will each be equipped to pursue their ambition to accelerate data connectivity for the many users deprived of the economic and social benefits of the Internet.

AMOS-6, which is scheduled for launch in the second half of 2016. is a Ka-band geostationary satellite configured with high gain spot beams for covering large parts of West, East and Southern Africa. The capacity is optimised for community and Direct-to-User Internet access using affordable, off-the-shelf customer equipment. According to the terms of the agreement, the capacity will be shared between Eutelsat and Facebook.

“Facebook’s mission is to connect the world and we believe that satellites will play an important role in addressing the significant barriers that exist in connecting the people of Africa,” said Chris Daniels, VP of Internet.org.  “We are looking forward to partnering with Eutelsat on this project and investigating new ways to use satellites to connect people in the most remote areas of the world more efficiently.”

https://www.facebook.com/zuck
http://news.eutelsat.com/pressreleases/eutelsat-and-facebook-to-partner-on-satellite-initiative-to-get-more-africans-online-1228638

Monday, May 9, 2016

Eutelsat and Facebook Choose Hughes JUPITER for Africa

Eutelsat Communications and Facebook have selected Hughes Network Systems' JUPITER System as the technology platform for satellite broadband services that both companies are preparing to launch in Sub-Saharan Africa. Eutelsat and Facebook are assembling a dedicated infrastructure that will extend cost-effective broadband to areas of Sub-Saharan Africa beyond reach of fixed and mobile terrestrial networks.

Specifically, Eutelsat will use the JUPITER System configuration including three gateway stations, two centralized data centers, a network management system and an initial number of user terminals. This will be combined with the high-gain Ka-band spot beam capacity provided by Spacecom's AMOS-6 satellite. The AMOS-6 satellite is due to enter service in early 2017.

The foundational technology in the JUPITER System is a custom–designed VLSI (Very Large Scale Integration) processor employing a multi-core architecture and enabling more than 100 Mbps of throughput on every terminal in the JUPITER family.

"We evaluated all major broadband system vendors before selecting Hughes. Their decades of experience in satellite technology and the JUPITER System's proven capabilities made it our preferred choice for this exciting venture with Facebook," said Laurent Grimaldi, CEO of the new broadband company created by Eutelsat to steer its African broadband vision and business.

"Internet access is synonymous with economic and social development in today's digital economy," said Ramesh Ramaswamy, senior vice president, International at Hughes. "We are proud to be part of this important initiative to close the digital divide in Sub-Saharan Africa — connecting people to information and resources that can transform their lives for the better."

http://www.hughes.com
http://www.echostart.com

Eutelsat Signs Facebook for AMOS-6 Satellite over Africa

Eutelsat Communications and Facebook announced a plan to leverage satellite technologies to get more Africans online.

Under a multi-year agreement with Spacecom, the two companies will utilize the entire broadband payload on the upcoming AMOS-6 satellite and will build a dedicated system comprising satellite capacity, gateways and terminals. In providing reach to large parts of Sub-Saharan Africa, Eutelsat and Facebook will each be equipped to pursue their ambition to accelerate data connectivity for the many users deprived of the economic and social benefits of the Internet.

AMOS-6, which is scheduled for launch in the second half of 2016. is a Ka-band geostationary satellite configured with high gain spot beams for covering large parts of West, East and Southern Africa. The capacity is optimised for community and Direct-to-User Internet access using affordable, off-the-shelf customer equipment. According to the terms of the agreement, the capacity will be shared between Eutelsat and Facebook.

“Facebook’s mission is to connect the world and we believe that satellites will play an important role in addressing the significant barriers that exist in connecting the people of Africa,” said Chris Daniels, VP of Internet.org.  “We are looking forward to partnering with Eutelsat on this project and investigating new ways to use satellites to connect people in the most remote areas of the world more efficiently.”

https://www.facebook.com/zuck
http://news.eutelsat.com/pressreleases/eutelsat-and-facebook-to-partner-on-satellite-initiative-to-get-more-africans-online-1228638

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

#MWC16: Orange Signs with Google for Africa & Middle East

Orange announced a content partnership with Google to bring the best of mobile Internet across its full African and Middle Eastern (Orange MEA) footprint. The deal includes popular content covering fashion, sport and music, as well as everyday tools such as Google Search, YouTube and Google Maps.

Customers will receive one of the most competitively priced tariff plans in the region starting at $40, which will consist of a high-specification smartphone and a communication bundle with voice, SMS and data. Orange said the offer will be delivered in a phased approach and will start to roll-out across the full Orange MEA footprint in Q2 this year. The device will launch with the native set of Google services and the goal of the partnership is to develop local services and content over time.

“As the first pan-Africa and Middle East mobile partnership with Google on this scale, we are able to bring direct value to our customers by offering the best access and services to ensure they get the most out of the mobile internet,” says Yves Maitre, Executive Vice President of Connected Objects and Partnerships, Orange. “Through this all-inclusive digital communications package, we are proud to continue our promise to deliver affordable internet access across the region and connect people to what is essential in their lives.”

http://www.orange.com

Monday, December 14, 2015

Facebook Launches Innovation Challenge for Africa

Facebook is taking its Internet.org Innovation Challenge to Africa the aim of recognizing developers and entrepreneurs who are using the Internet to improve the standard of education and economic health in their communities. Developers across Africa are invited to enter the challenge.

Facebook will present an Innovation Challenge Award of US $150,000 to the app, website or service judged to be the best in two categories: learning/education and economic empowerment. Each Innovation Challenge Award winner will also receive a package of tools and services worth up to $60,000 from Facebook’s FbStart program. Two apps, websites or services in each category will receive an Impact Award prize in the amount of $50,000.

All entries must be received by May 1, 2016.

“The Internet.org Innovation Challenge in Africa supports our vision of a connected world by recognizing those who are working on solutions that aim to improve education and economic health of communities in Africa,” says Ime Archibong, director of strategic partnerships at Facebook. “We’re looking forward to seeing how African developers are providing real value for their communities. By connecting people and empowering them with access to services and information, we can help them achieve extraordinary things and help them to enhance their lives.”

https://info.internet.org/en/story/innovation-challenge

Monday, November 30, 2015

Orange and ENGIE to Collaborate on Rural Electricity Grid in Africa

Orange and ENGIE announced a partnership to use their technological knowledge to achieve sustainable progress and economic and social development in Africa. The goal is to expand the electricity grid in Africa and encourage responsible power consumption. These solutions could, for instance, include individual solar kits and small-scale, local electricity networks. The service could then be billed via mobile using Orange Money. Both companies are participating in the COP21 conference in Paris.

Orange is present in 19 countries in Africa and the Middle East. ENGIE, which is an international player in the the energy sector, currently supplies 760 MW of power in Africa and aims to become one of the major energy leaders on the continent by 2025 with several major projects planned.

http://www.orange.com


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Rollout Continues on Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) Cable

Phase II of the Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) submarine cable system, a 5,000km extension from the Gulf of Guinea island of Sao Tomé-et-Principe to South Africa, is set to begin. Phase II will link Namibia, Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Congo-Brazzaville and South Africa, including an extension to Cameroon. On completion of the Phase II extension, the ACE system will deliver an overall design capacity of 12.8 Tbps.

Alcatel-Lucent is supplying 100G submarine technology,

“The extension of the ACE system to South Africa is a significant milestone that confirms our commitment to address the connectivity challenges facing Africa. ASN’s know-how and technological innovations, which we have recently tested on our existing network, will support us in further developing direct connectivity within Africa and to the overall objective of ACE to reduce communication costs and drive social and economic growth in the continent,” stated Yves Ruggeri, Chairman of the ACE Management Committee/

https://www.alcatel-lucent.com


  • ACE consortium, led by Orange, is composed of 19 operators, namely: Benin ACE GIE, Cable Consortium of Liberia, Canalink, Côte d’Ivoire Telecom, Dolphin Telecom, Guineenne de la Large Bande, Gambia Submarine Cable Company, International Mauritania Telecom, Orange Cameroun, Orange France, Orange Mali, Orange Niger, MEO, Republic of Cameroon, Republic of Equatorial Guinea, Sierra Leone Cable Limited (SALCAB), Sonatel, SPIN (Gabon) and STP Cabo.. Phase I covered 11,500 km linking Sao Tomé and Principe to France - via Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Nigeria, Benin, Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, The Gambia, Senegal, Mauritania, Tenerife (Spain) and Portugal. Phase II will span more than 5,000 km, for an overall system distance of 17,000 km.  

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

VimpelCom to Exit Zimbabwe

VimpelCom will sell its stake in Telecel International Limited to ZARNet (Private) for $40 million. Telecel International owns 60% of Telecel Zimbabwe (Pvt) Ltd.

ZARNet is wholly owned by the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe through the Ministry of Information & Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services.

http://www.vimpelcom.com

See also