Zimbabwe billionaire Strive Masiyiwa-led Liquid Telecom announced that it would be investing $400 million over the next three years in Egypt. This landmark agreement, which includes investments in network infrastructure and data centres was signed in partnership with Egypt’s primary telephone company, Telecom Egypt. Whilst also partnering with Liquid Telecom to build data centres across Egypt, Telecom Egypt will be able to use the network to connect Egyptian businesses to the rest of the world.
The deal signed on the sidelines of the Africa 2018 Forum which took place in Sharm El Sheikh Egypt follows the completion of Liquid Telecom’s award-winning ‘Cape to Cairo’ network – the first direct land-based terrestrial fibre link from Cape Town to Cairo. The Cape Town to Cairo network, which is part of the “One Africa” broadband network is almost 70,000km in length and it is linked to more than 600 towns and cities in 13 countries across Africa.
“We have already crossed Africa from East to West through Sudan and Chad. We are at the Nigerian border and we expect to reach Abuja by the end of January in time for the AU Summit. We want to reach Dakar before President El-Sisi finishes his term,” said Strive Masiyiwa, Group Executive Chairman of Liquid Telecom’s parent company Econet.
President El-Sisi welcomed the development as a major milestone in connecting the African continent with Egypt and said he would continue to push the initiative during his tenure next year as Chair of the AU’s 54-nation body.
Masiyiwa also acknowledged the support of President Kagame in achieving this feat: “It would have been impossible to reach this far so quickly without his support. He adopted this initiative as a key project during his tenure and has been highly supportive throughout its development. We know President El-Sisi will help us take it to the next level because he understands the vision of Africa.”
While expressing appreciation to other leaders across the continent for their support he encouraged entrepreneurs by saying that they could also build continental linkage projects in other sectors such as power and transportation.
What you should know about Telecom Egypt
- Telecom Egypt is the first total telecom operator in Egypt providing all telecom services to its customers including fixed, and mobile voice and data services.
- Telecom Egypt has a long history of serving Egyptian customers for over 160 years.
- The telco which operates as “WE” brand also owns a 45 percent stake in Vodafone Egypt.
- The company has another IT arm, known as Xceed contact Center (Xceedcc) located in Egypt’s Smart Village.
- The shares and Global Depositary Receipts (GDRs) of Telecom Egypt are traded on the Egyptian Exchange and the London Stock Exchange.
What you may not know about Liquid Telecom
Liquid Telecom is a leading communications solutions provider across 13 countries primarily in Eastern, Central and Southern Africa.
It has built Africa’s largest independent fibre network, approaching 70,000km, and operates state-of-the-art data centres in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Nairobi, with a combined potential 19,000 square metres of rack space and 74.5 MW of power.