Safaricom has indicated that its next wave of investment will centre on the expansion of its existing fibre-optic network, which it seeks to increase four-fold over the next three years. Speaking to Business Daily Africa, CEO Bob Collymore confirmed that the company seeks to increase its fibre network from 600km to 2,400km, at a cost of approximately KES14 billion (USD161.7 million). He said: ‘The next set of investments is going to be around fibre because we have a major dependency on fibre. An additional 800km is now planned as Phase One of the fibre rollout project. This phase will run for 18 months from the start of current financial year. In the next three years, we will be working on extending the footprint by up to 500km per year’. The first phase of the project will be implemented in Nairobi and involve the replacement of old and damaged cables. Safaricom currently relies on third party carriers with more extensive fibre networks, such as Telkom Kenya, whose fibre network spans 4,500km, Jamii Telecommunication Ltd (JTL, 4,000km) and AccessKenya (350km). The telco pays around KES2.1 billion on an annual basis to utilise these facilities.
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