Safaricom will use East Africa Marine System (TEAMS), a 5,000-km fibre-optic undersea cable linking Kenya’s Mombasa with Etisalat’s SmartHub in Fujairah in the UAE, the region’s largest capacity, content, internet and data hub in the Middle East.
Smarthub provides regional access for global service providers and global access to the region.
According to Bob Collymore, Safaricom CEO: “The growth of broadband in East Africa is directly related to the recent undersea cable developments. We are delighted to be working with Etisalat to enhance our high quality communication services. Kenya is increasingly the hub for regional telecom services for East Africa and linking of our two hubs is a strategic move that will benefit consumers and corporate customer alike.”
By connecting to the East African Marine System (TEAMS), a 5,000-km fibre-optic undersea cable between Mombasa and Fujairah in the UAE, the firm will take advantage of Etisalat’s capacity hub and access the content hub within the SmartHub facility.
In a statement Ali Amiri, Executive Vice President, Carrier & Wholesale, Etisalat said: “Today’s announcement reiterates the importance of the UAE and Etisalat as the hub for East Africa internet connectivity. The East African Marine System (TEAM’s) cable is an important part of the SmartHub network, providing high speed connectivity for East Africa.
“We are delighted that Safaricom, is using the integrated capabilities of the Etisalat SmartHub and East African Marine System (TEAM’s). We both believe that the development goals of Africa must be supported by greater internet connectivity and joining our SmartHub community is a major step forward.”
With operations in 20 countries across Asia and Africa, Bharti Airtel has also partnered with Etisalat to set up a multi-service regional network infrastructure node in Etisalat’s SmartHub facility in the region in a move it says will allow it provide advanced data and wholesale services to its customers in Middle East and Africa and enhance in region connectivity through Etisalat’s extensive regional network. It will also provide a platform to Etisalat to reach out to key global business hubs such as Africa and India.
Ali Amiri, Executive Vice President, Carrier & Wholesale, Etisalat said: “We are proud that Bharti Airtel, a longtime Etisalat partner has chosen SmartHub. The facility will offer Airtel an array of regional connectivity options both in and out of the region. This partnership will also enable direct routing of traffic between the Middle East and Africa, Asia and Europe. We look forward to many more years of cooperation with Bharti Airtel and are delighted to be working closely with them to enhance the customer experience.”
The collaboration with Etisalat is expected to further help Bharti Airtel to cater to the growing bandwidth demands of its enterprise and carrier customers in the region said Ajay Chitkara, CEO, Global Business, Bharti Airtel.