CIO East Africa (Nairobi)

Kenya: Bluwan Targets Africa Expansion Through Partnership With GDS Technologies

Bluwan, a provider of carrier-grade multi-gigabit wireless solutions, announced today that it will enter into a value added reseller partnership agreement with GDS Technologies, a premier systems integrator and solutions provider. GDS Technologies supply the African market with the latest wireless backhaul technologies targeting mobile network operators, enterprise and government markets.

Based in South Africa, GDS Technologies is responding to the dramatic increase in demand for mobile broadband in Africa. It will work closely with Bluwan to provide the region with the ability to accelerate its mobile broadband and fixed wireless access deployments, by capitalising on Bluwan's core expertise in delivering point to multipoint solutions.

Bluwan will leverage GDS Technologies' intimate knowledge of region specific challenges, and stellar track record as a point to multipoint microwave market leader. GDS Technologies will identify and capitalise on market opportunities for Bluwan's innovative Fibre Through The Air (FTTAâ„¢) wireless backhaul platform, that delivers on the promise of faster and ubiquitous mobile broadband.

Bluwan's next generation millimetre wave point to multipoint backhaul technology, operating in the ITU, CEPT and ETSI harmonised 40.5 - 43.5 GHz spectrum, is perfectly positioned to enable operators across Africa to leverage existing investments in 3G networks, and meet the growing demand for mobile data. The solution provides up to 8 Gigabits per Second of hub capacity, and delivers 100 - 400 Megabits per Second end point capacity.

As RAN technologies evolve through LTE, LTE-A, HetNets and ultimately cloud-based RAN architectures over the next five years, it is imperative that future-proof backhaul systems are implemented to support them. African operators that deploy Bluwan's solution can drive cost savings while maximising available capacity by directly extending the reach of fibre. This approach delivers up to ten times the amount of capacity delivered by previous generation multipoint solutions. Bluwan's solution greatly reduces the financial and operational risks associated with deploying fibre optic backhaul networks, especially as networks continue to increase in cell site density.

"Africa continues to be a significant opportunity for Bluwan and its FTTA solution," says Shayan Sanyal, Chief Commercial Officer at Bluwan. "The entire continent is going through an exciting period of transformation African operators require step changes in point to multipoint backhaul, in terms of sheer capacity and end point bandwidth delivery, which current technologies simply cannot provide. Our solutions are being trialed by leading operators in Europe and the Middle East; our partnership with GDS Technologies will ensure that we extend the same innovative solutions to a fast growing African market, with a dedicated regional centre of excellence for optimal planning, deployment and support conditions."

"The point to multipoint business case is fast becoming the key to supporting data intensive networks. In 2006 we introduced point to multipoint microwave to the African market: it was well suited for 3G rollouts, allowing for optimal use of limited spectrum. However, with the evolution of technology and increase in user data demand there is an urgent requirement to offer a solution capable of fibre type speeds in a wireless environment. Bluwan's innovative technology provides this natural upgrade path from legacy investments, and we are excited to bring another first to the African market," says Neeren Ramharakh, CEO at GDS Technologies.

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