Free fibre for businesses
Open-access fibre infrastructure company Conduct Telecommunications wants to connect South African businesses to its fibre network free of charge. By Craig Wilson.
Open-access fibre infrastructure supplier Conduct Telecommunications says it will connect business premises in Johannesburg and Cape Town to its fibre-optic broadband network at no cost.
The company intends to expand its footprint to 100 business precincts across the country. CEO Johan Pretorius says that because Conduct’s network is open access, any Internet service provider can make use of the fibre, which he expects will drive down prices and reduce the duplication of infrastructure.
Companies that take up the offer won’t be hit with installation costs and aren’t obliged to use the infrastructure.
Pretorius says service providers can utilise the open-access network to provide connections with speeds anywhere between 2Mbit/s and 1Gbit/s.
Conduct’s network is already running into premises in Johannesburg in areas including Hyde Park, Rosebank, Sandton, Illovo, Bryanston and Rivonia. The company intends expanding its network to cover Parktown, Rivonia, Randburg, Sunninghill and Woodmead. It also has projects underway in Cape Town.
Pretorius says it hopes its move will create a “market between tenants and occupants on one hand and service providers on the other”.
“If you create that viable market and provide the infrastructure, you increase uptake. We can take a slightly more patient view on the payback of that infrastructure, while service providers have a hard time doing so,” he says, adding that the company subscribes to the “build-it-and-they-will-come” risk model.
When asked if there are any plans to run similar projects for consumers in high-density residential areas, Pretorius tells TechCentral that this is “very much in the pipeline”. Conduct hopes to begin a fibre-to-the-home project “in the next 12 to 24 months”. — (c) 2013 NewsCentral Media