Internet services provider to invest over N99.5 trillion on broadband infrastructure by 2020

Companies are tapping into Nigeria’s potential as a data market, with 147 million mobile-phone subscribers in Africa’s most populous nation.

MainOne is the biggest supplier of wholesale Internet in West Africa.

According to sources, MainOne, a leading provider of innovative telecom services and network solutions for businesses in WestAfrica, plans to double its investment on broadband infrastructure in the next five years.

According to Ms. Funke Opeke, chief executive officer of MainOne, the funding may come from additional shareholder equity, loans or through a bond sale within the next five years.

"MainOne, in the last five years, has invested about $300million in the region, targets the expansion of its data centers and submarine cable infrastructure in Cameroon, Ghana, Ivory Coast and Nigeria as more companies move their business model online,” Opeke was quoted as saying.

Sources say companies are tapping into Nigeria’s potential as a data market, with 147 million mobile-phone subscribers in Africa’s most populous nation. Nigeria wants to increase its broadband penetration five-fold from 4 percent of the population, according to its National Broadband Plan for 2013-2018.

“When you look at where the market opportunities exist in West Africa, I think if we have Nigeria, Ghana and Ivory Coast, we have probably covered 60 to 75 percent of the market,” Opeke said.

Speaking to journalists recently as part of activities on the company’s fifth year anniversary, Opeke said MainOne has overtime evolved from a submarine cable operator to becoming a full-service business-to-business communications services provider.

She stated that within its five years of operation, the company had made further investments in growing directly and through partnerships its fiber terrestrial network and POPs across the region and opened a Tier III Data Center, MDX-I, which is the first of its kind for the region in Lagos earlier this year.

The MainOne CEO explained that since inception, MainOne’s objective has been to bridge the digital gap in West Africa and to become the preferred provider of wholesale Internet services.

According to her, it has achieved this with services delivered to 7 countries in West Africa, and an impressive list of 500+ major telecom operators, ISPs, government agencies, large enterprises, and educational institutions in the region on its network.

Today, MainOne has the region’s highest lit capacity on its submarine cable, and is the #1 Internet transit provider in West Africa, interconnected with the London Internet Exchange (LINX), Amsterdam Internet Exchange (AMIX), Nigerian Internet Exchange (IXPN) and the Ghanaian Internet Exchange (GIX).

In five years, MainOne has invested over $300m in infrastructure in West Africa geared towards improving connectivity and data center services in the region.


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