12 November 2012

Kenya: Accesskenya to Invest Millions Fibre Connectivity

AccessKenya Group has announced plans to continue pushing for fibre connectivity uptake in the next financial year to deliver a better broadband experience to its customers.

AccessKenya Managing Director Kris Senanu said the company has seen merits of delivering reliable connectivity through the fibre optic cable and is considering more investment of over Sh120 million in 2013 towards deploying fibre solutions to the corporate sector in Kenya.

"We continue to sign up clients onto our fibre network and our expansion is entirely demand-driven. This not only underscores the need for strategic investment in the deployment of fibre technologies, but also signals the maturity of the Kenyan market in Internet usage and consumption," he said.

According to Senanu, the increase in the uptake of fibre among the Kenyan corporate and high-end residential clients has driven the AccessKenya's turnaround strategy that has seen the company's returns grow over time.

He also noted that the company is keen on product diversification and enhanced customer service to firm its grip on market share.

These comments come in the wake of encouraging numbers of fixed Internet subscriptions, which have risen by an impressive 81.7 percent in the second quarter of 2012 compared to last year.

The current Internet subscriptions in the country stand at 7.7 million, up from 4.2 million in 2011.

According to service providers, this is a healthy sign of competitive service positioning put forth by both mobile service providers and the traditional Internet Service Providers (ISPs).

Senanu noted that going by the latest Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) statistics, Internet subscription is on a steady rise, albeit driven by mobile Internet.

He added that this is bound to drive the appetite for unlimited broadband that can only be delivered through fibre optic cable connectivity.

From the statistics, fibre subscription has grown by a steady 26.7 percent to reach close to 50,000 subscriptions up from 22,000 in the same period last year.

"ISPs have repeatedly faced the question: are mobile service providers eating your lunch? Well, we have said this before that the more people access the internet through their mobile phone devices, the more the need for dedicated broadband that is only possible through fixed connectivity," he explained.

Earlier this year, AccessKenya embarked on an aggressive network expansion program and has spent in excess of Sh100 million, allowing the national fibre footprint to extend over 400 kilometres in Nairobi and Mombasa.

The company has also opened offices in Kisumu and Nakuru to serve its growing clientele in western and rift valley regions ahead of the actualization the county system of governance.

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