Business fibre connectivity provider Dark Fibre Africa (DFA) has entered into agreements with Herotel and Comsol to improve its connectivity coverage footprint and network redundancy.
DFA chief sales and marketing officer Praveen Govender said the partnerships were a first for DFA and a notable step towards what it regarded to be the future of South African telecoms.
“Considering the less-than-optimal penetration of fibre and significant overbuild by fibre network operators, we want to ensure we stay aligned with our vision of connecting all of South Africa to high-speed, high-volume broadband,” Govender said.
“However, the industry faces severe capital expenditure constraints, with investors exercising caution amid load-shedding and global uncertainty affecting long-term investment decisions.”
As part of the agreement with Herotel, DFA’s partner Internet service providers (ISPs) will be able to sell business connectivity in areas covered by Herotel’s network.
“While DFA already boasts substantial fibre coverage in major metros, Herotel’s network spans smaller metros, covering over 400 towns,” DFA said.
“This opens new opportunities for DFA’s customers to sell business connectivity in conjunction with their business solutions and services.”
The agreement with Comsol will enhance DFA’s redundancy in multiple locations.
“Where feasible, DFA can offer alternate technologies such as microwave as temporary solutions while awaiting fibre, or as redundancy, ensuring services have reliable uptime,” DFA said.
The new offerings have been integrated into DFA’s product offerings and are live on DFA’s coverage map.
DFA said products and coverage may be restricted to successfully onboarded partner products. More products and coverage may become available in the future.
Multiple benefits of partnerships
Govender said that it was important for telecoms firms to remain agile and light on operating expenditure to capitalise on opportunities quickly.
“Partnering makes sense – and ultimately – the customer benefits from having the best service from experienced industry players, backed by a brand that they trust,” he said.
Govender also highlighted that working through partners improved the delivery time to the end user.
“Our aim is to keep the mean-time-to-install as short as possible, ensuring businesses get up and running quickly,” he explained.
“Connectivity is a vital catalyst to successfully building up our economy — since we know that every 10% of increased connectivity penetration results in 0.8% GDP growth.”
Govender added that the expanded coverage enabled by the agreements was a significant step towards DFA’s ultimate mission of having 100% coverage for fixed business connectivity throughout South Africa.