Telecom operator Paratus expands into DRC

Telecom operator Paratus expands into DRC

Paratus Group has announced its expansion into the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

In a statement the company says by adding DRC to its terrestrial network, it now has a contiguous footprint in Africa, which includes: offices in seven SADC countries; four Data Centers; five satellite teleports with 6 000 customer sites; the Google Equiano Cable landing station in Namibia and an extended network through satellite connectivity-focused service in more than 30 African countries.

Paratus also has international points of presence (PoPs) in UK, Europe and the USA.

The expansion into DRC coincides with Paratus, together with DRC based Global Broadband Solution (GBS), winning a government tender to activate a 620-kilometre fibre optic network link between Muanda, on the West Coast, to the capital city, Kinshasa.  

Paratus and GBS have established FAST Congo to deliver, operate and maintain the network link in an exclusive 15-year license contract.   

Earlier this week, the DRC fibre link deal with FAST Congo was officially signed and announced by SOCOF (Societe Congolaise de Fibre Optique), the government entity established to develop telecommunications infrastructure and equipment in the DRC. 

Paratus formed a consortium with local internet service provider, GBS, to create a strategic public private partnership with SOCOF to activate, operate and maintain the fibre highway that was installed and funded by The World Bank. The network spans the railway line between Muanda and Kinshasa which, en route, takes in six towns. 

With the objective of increasing connectivity throughout the region, FAST Congo is working towards activating the fibre link in the third quarter of 2022. 

“This is an extremely important strategic development for Paratus,” said Rolf Mendelsohn, Chief Technical Officer at Paratus Group. We are not only uniquely qualified to open this fibre highway in DRC, but we’re also uniquely placed to connect the country to Angola, Zambia and beyond via our own network in the SADC.”

He adds: “This presents great potential for the region’s economy and for quality connections and increased capacity to be offered as standard to businesses and consumers alike. We are very proud to be the lead company in making this happen.”   

Also commenting, Francois-Xavier Kabemba, Managing Director of FAST Congo said, “We have already started work on installing the necessary equipment to expedite the fibre optic network’s activation.  As our company name implies, we are committed to delivering fast, secure, quality network connections to the people and businesses of DRC so that they may benefit from the unlimited opportunities offered by fibre,” he concludes.