R/€ = 13.85
R/$ = 10.93
Au 1231.31 $/oz
Pt 1248.50 $/oz
Sep 21, 2007
Cellular group may spend R1,3bn on 5 000-km optical-fibre networkBack
Africa|Copper|Environment|JSE|MTN|PROJECT|Rosebank|SABMiller|Vodacom|Africa|South Africa|Backbone Network|Building|Cellular Operator|Equipment|Fixed-line Network|Mobile Operator|Optical-fibre Network|Product|Products|Service|Services|Solutions|Tim Lowry|Cables|Ethernet|MPLs
© Reuse this Mobile operator MTN has started the process to roll out some 5 000 km of optical-fibre network nationwide over the next two years, the company said earlier this month.
MTN South Africa MD Tim Lowry called the initiative “a massive self-provision investment” that would involve an estimated R1,2-billion to R1,3-billion, depend- ing on possible joint ventures or partnerships that are likely to be entered into during the course of the project.
Possible partners included new entrant Neotel and the country’s biggest cellular operator, Vodacom, which has also said that it plans to build a fixed-line network.
Lowry said that MTN would want to reduce the level of capital expenditure through partnerships.
MTN announced in June that it was considering entering the fixed-line business in South Africa to keep up with the growth in data traffic and cut one of the company’s biggest operational costs.
MTN said that it had designed and mapped out its own national backbone network, and was in the process of going out to tender to identify relevant suppliers and obtain final costings for the laying of the 5 000-km network.
The tender process is expected to be finalised by the end of the year.
MTN has already undertaken a pilot project with fibre-optic cables being laid between Sandton, Illovo and Rosebank. Lowry noted that the project “was largely deployed” at present. Companies such as SABMiller and the JSE have been involved in the project.
The first phase has involved a capital expenditure of about R8-mil- lion for the fibre and about R2-mil- lion for the equipment, Lowry noted.
He explained that the area in which the pilot project has been carried out was home to a number of financial services companies and large blue-chip organisations, and that MTN’s product offerings were well suited to these firms.
MTN will initially launch three products: an Ethernet MPLS, an Ethernet private-line service and a multitenant connect service. Future developments by the end of the year may include an Ethernet elocal area network, a dual connect, a full redundant connect, and a multi- tenant connect service that will use a building’s existing copper cabling for reticulation.
Lowry said that MTN was trying to build an environment where a company could have a centralised server and centralised applications and could run the entire business nationwide from the one location.
MTN Business head of network solutions Mike Brierley explained that the usual lead times attached to fibre-optics networks was about 12 months, but that MTN could roll out the service in between 6 and 12 weeks.
He added that bandwidth was flexible and could also be easily and quickly upgraded, where required.
Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other ICT News
Article contains comments
Recent Research Reports
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
This Week's Magazine
Integrated energy and chemical company Sasol has partnered with Unisa Graduate School of Business Leadership (SBL) professor and founder and CEO of PanAvest Partnership Dr Douglas Boateng to publish a series of books on executive supply chain management aimed at...
The World Wide Fund for Nature’s (WWF’s) 2014 Living Planet Index (LPI) indicates that there has been a 52% decline in vertebrate species since 1970. The Index tracked the trends of 10 000 discrete populations of over 3000 vertebrate species between 1970 and 2010.
Rwanda has joined a number of East African countries seeking to import electricity from Ethiopia as its demand grows. After it became apparent several generation project it is implementing will not come on stream early enough, now plans to import 400 MW from Ethiopia...
Metrorail’s first new passenger train will arrive in November next year, says Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) CEO Lucky Montana. “Next year we will be able to put our hands around the infrastructure and equipment we have been talking about for so long.”
The Competition Commission has launched an investigation into what it says are “price fixing, market division and collusive tendering in the market for the manufacture and supply of automotive components to original equipment manufacturers” (OEMs, or vehicle...