WIOCC, Africa’s Carriers’ Carrier is present at Submarine Networks Europe being held in Hilton Tower Bridge, London today Tuesday 20th and tomorrow Wednesday 21st February 2018.
Chris Wood, WIOCC CEO takes out his crystal ball and shares his vision on what the next 5 years will bring for the subsea communications for the industry at Submarine Networks Europe, alongside four other industry leaders including Elaine Stafford – Managing Partner, DRG Undersea Consulting being the Moderator, Andrew Edilson – VP Wholesale, Colt Technology Services, Alasdair Wilkie – CTO, Deep Blue Cable and Byron Clatterbuck – CEO, SEACOM Ltd.
The panel is scheduled for Wednesday 21st (Day 2) at 09.10 (GMT) and is expected to focus on:
Emerging markets: opportunities and challenges
Who will be the next big players?
The technologies changing the future of subsea networks
Will it be more of the same in the next 5 years?
Chris Wood will be in the company of Mike Last, CMO & VP International Business Development and Rob Irvin, Director, Bid Management and Products. If you would like to get more insight on WIOCC offerings to the industry kindly contact email@example.com.
Come along and interact with WIOCC, Africa’s carriers’ carrier at the ITW (International Telecoms Week) conference. The event is the largest meeting point for the global wholesale telecoms community, running from May 14th – 17th 2017 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Chicago, IL.
Chris Wood, WIOCC CEO, will lead a team representing its Kenya, South Africa and UK offices. The team comprises: Sam Ndungu -CFO; James Wekesa – CCO; Ryan Sher – COO; Mike Last – CMO & VP, Marketing & International Business Development; Hitesh Desai – Director, Southern Africa Sales; Rob Irvin – Director, Bid Management & Product; Darren Bedford – Director, Africa Business Development; Martin Mutiiria – Director, Africa-Sales; Nikki Popoola – Director West Africa; Tony Razzell – Director of Business Intelligence and Winnie Karisa – Marketing Assistant.
During the conference, Chris Wood will share his expertise at a panel discussion on Tuesday 16th May, 2017 from 08.30 – 11.30 on ‘’Achieving A Connected Continent: Leading The Data Explosion Across Africa’’ at Swiss Tower, Gold Level, Alpine.
Meetings are being scheduled with existing and prospective customers. To arrange a meeting with the team, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find us at Columbus EF, Gold Level, East Tower, Hyatt Regency.
Africa’s carriers’ carrier, WIOCC is in the running for a hat-trick of awards at this year’s AfricaCom Awards, which will be announced in Cape Town on the 16th November.
An experienced panel of judges drawn from across the telecoms industry shortlisted WIOCC’s ‘Connecting and extending connectivity in Somalia’ entry for the Changing Lives Award, as well as its ‘WIOCC’s Johannesburg Metropolitan Area Network: overcoming the high cost of local loop delivery’ entry in the Best Connectivity Solution category, and also its ‘Further enhancing WIOCC’s unique pan-African network‘ entry for the Best Network Improvement Award.
“WIOCC continues to push the boundaries in order to meet the ever more complex requirements of Africa’s wholesale markets. It is always a pleasure to have our work recognised by independent third-parties, but for me the ultimate reward is to see customers coming back to us year after year for solutions to their evolving communications needs – including the provision of end-to-end network solutions to an ever-growing list of locations in Africa”, commented WIOCC CEO Chris Wood.
London – Africa’s international bandwidth markets are experiencing another growth bump with the roll-out of LTE moving ahead apace. Whereas the minimum unit to buy was an E1, it’s now an STM1. Russell Southwood spoke to Chris Wood, CEO of WIOCC about how he sees the market.
WIOCC’s Chris Wood told me that he was building out metronets in Johannesburg: ”We’re buying (dark fibre) from DFA and we’ll launch 39 PoPs around that. This is exactly what we want to be doing. We’re not making money from it but driving traffic onto our core assets.”
The amount of capacity used by his consortium’s members and its customers has doubled in volume in the last 12 months and he thinks that this kind of growth will continue over the next 5 years.
“This growth is driven in the final instance by local access networks. The higher the broadband speeds, the more people will use them. The big content players have all come to the continent to build their business here: Netflix, Amazon, Facebook and Google. AT&T, Sprint and Verizon all want to bring Africa into the mainstream of their networks. 4G plays into that. 5G is coming. Most end-users are accessing content on mobile devices and the price of handsets has come down. High capacity demand (also) comes with Fibre-To-The-Home. The difference is dramatic. In Kenya you’ve got four players doing this: Wananchi, FON, Jamii and Liquid Telecom. Most housing estates of a certain level – professionals – are fibre connected. I have 27 mbps coming into my house and can stream TV, both locally and internationally.” The impact of 4G and FTTH is that operators are now buying STM16s and not STM4s or STM1s.
The above might sound very uplifting but what about a smaller and more challenging market like Somalia? ”We went live there in February 2014. Volumes have been doubling every 6 months. We’ve just sold an STM16 and there’s about 10 Gbps in service in Mogadishu and that will probably double between now and the end of the year. There are metronets around Mogadishu and all the mobile networks are 3G. People are getting online at an affordable level.”
One impact of the rise in volumes sold has been a pattern of falling prices. The most dramatic illustration of this is at wholesale level (STM16-STM64), prices in South Africa have fallen to US$5 per mbps. Sadly, some of us are old enough to remember when such bandwidth used to cost thousands of dollars per Mbps. It is a sign of Africa’s online growth that prices are falling and volumes growing. It’s not easy for cable operators but great news for Africa’s Internet users. Obviously prices remain higher in harder to reach countries like DRC, particularly its eastern half. I met a colleague from Goma this week who told me that mobile operators there had actually put up retail mobile internet access prices. As Sci-Fi writer William Gibson says: “The future’s already here, it’s just unevenly distributed.”
But the dramatic fall in prices – particularly in South Africa – makes Wood skeptical of the new international fibre projects recently announced: ”With these low South Africa rates, you’re already below build costs. EASSy will add 2 Tbps next year for a few million dollars. (The fibre projects) from Africa One and Liquid Telecom don’t make a whole lot of sense. It’s a $200 million system that needs to recover it’s money over a 3-4 year period. I can’t see that being possible in Africa over that time. You can buy an IRU on any system at very competitive rates. If they get built, cable prices will go down faster and it’s more than the market can soak up.”
In addition to these two new cables, the Angola Cables project from Angola to Brazil (with a Miami link) was confirmed at ITW, the long awaited phase two extension of ACE to South Africa is happening and there will be an upgrade on WACS.
He’s also clear that there should be a solution to the spate of international cable outages there have been: “We all need to buy from every system. Big operators can easily swop capacity.”And the saddest story? Eritrea: ”It’s a sad case. We have tried over the years to get them to join WIOCC. It’s the only country without international fibre. Other routes also made offers and they were not taken up. They need to take advantage of them as no-one will build to their door otherwise.”
Chris Wood, CEO of Africa’s carriers’ carrier WIOCC, will discuss strategies for driving sustainable growth and meeting the huge demand for new infrastructure and services in Africa at TMT Finance & Investment Africa, which takes place on 14th June at the Millennium Hotel in Mayfair, London.
“Further investment in broadband infrastructure is crucial to enabling the realisation of the continent’s economic potential. This investment should be directed towards increasing the reach and reliability of terrestrial fibre; building more local Data Centres, Points of Presence (PoPs) and local metropolitan networks; and capacity-boosting technology upgrades for existing submarine cables”, commented WIOCC CEO Chris Wood.
Consistently named one of the 100 most powerful people in global telecoms, Chris Wood will be part of an expert panel of Telecom, Media and Tech leaders which also includes:
⦁ Cynthia Gordon, EVP and CEO Africa Division at Millicom
⦁ Hakam Kanafani, Chief Adviser & Member of the Board at Türk Telekom and Oger Telecom, and
⦁ David Williams, CEO of Avanti Communications Group.
The expert panel will be chaired by Coleago Consulting director Scott McKenzie and is set to discuss a range of topics including:
⦁ Assessing regional opportunities for investment, joint ventures and partnerships ⦁ Accelerating innovation and increasing profitability ⦁ Investing in infrastructure, new licences and technology ⦁ Working with key stakeholders, Governments and financiers
The increasing demand for diverse international connectivity and WIOCC’s collaboration in Europe with Viatel are the topics of a Capacity TV interview between Mike Last, Marketing and International Business Development Director for WIOCC, and Capacity magazine Editor Alex Hawkes.