Liquid Telecom and Sudatel Telecom Group are partnering to build fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) networks across Sudan. The two companies signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on the deal at an event at Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona.
The groups believe the partnership will increase the broadband capacity and speeds available to homes and businesses in Sudan, which are currently reliant on wireless networks to access the Internet.
How much money will be involved is unclear but Liquid Telecom group CEO, Nic Rudnick, told journalists at the signing in Barcelona that it would be a "meaningful and considerable investment" by the two companies.
"Our partnership with Liquid Telecom will enable us to provide a high-quality FTTH network which will help uplift people's lives through our region's economic development," said Tarig Hamza Zain El Abdein, CEO of Sudatel Telecom Group.
Comparable to similar networks deployed in Zimbabwe, Zambia, Kenya and Rwanda by Liquid Telecom, the new FTTH networks in Sudan will deliver speeds initially up to 100Mbps, which is expected to transform the way Sudanese businesses and consumers experience and use the Internet in the country.
"Liquid Telecom has a proven track record of bringing world-class fibre networks to previously underserved regions of Africa. We are delighted to support Sudatel with its efforts to deliver leading FTTH services to more businesses and consumers in Sudan, which will help grow the country's digital economy," added Rudnick.
The groups believe that by investing in Sudan's telecoms infrastructure, Sudatel and Liquid Telecom will help raise the quality of network services in the country while also increasing competition in the local market.
"Sudan really is a country of enormous promise and enormous opportunity and it is at a point in its development where it is emerging as a prominent player in the region.
"We are very proud and pleased to partner a company like Sudatel in order to provide and accelerate the rollout of broadband services across Sudan and also to utilise the capabilities that Sudatel has to further expand Liquid Telecom's pan-African network across the region," Rudnick said.
Econet founder and executive chairman, Strive Masiyiwa, said in a statement that the partnership would pave the way to further expand the penetration of broadband services across Africa.
Established in 1993, Sudatel provides both mobile and fixed (voice and data) services to businesses, residents and ISPs across North and West Africa, in addition to the provision of wholesale services to international carriers. Sudatel is partially owned by the Sudanese government and listed on both the Khartoum and Abu Dhabi Stock Exchanges.
Liquid Telecom, a subsidiary of Econet Global, is a pan-African telecoms group and communications services and solutions provider across 13 countries in eastern, central and southern Africa with an independent fibre network spanning over 50 000km.