State-backed Benin Telecoms has chosen the name ‘be.Telecoms’ as its converged telecoms brand going forward, under a campaign to distance itself from previous public dissatisfaction with its services and win back customers. As reported by Agence Ecofin, Degbe Caesar, General Manager of Benin Telecoms (be.Telecoms), announced the rebranding launch at an event this month (although the telco’s online presence is yet to reflect the name change). The rebranding is also designed to help make the company more attractive to investors as it opens up its capital to private shareholders.
TeleGeography notes that Benin Telecoms (be.Telecoms) is preparing for the imminent launch of 4G LTE mobile broadband services, having officially begun the 1800MHz LTE network rollout under a presidentially-backed programme in April this year. Its website and social media currently claim that an LTE launch will happen ‘very soon’, and its 4G LTE coverage map shows a footprint encompassing 20 cities and towns across all regions of Benin. The telco also claims that its LTE network will offer wireless data speeds of up to 100Mbps for smartphone, tablet and PC/laptop users, plus VoIP, business data and VPN services. The 4G launch will be supported by the newly switched-on access to Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) international submarine cable bandwidth which entered commercial service for Beninese operators via the Cotonou landing station earlier this month.
The state-run company’s struggling GSM mobile subsidiary Libercom was not mentioned in the recent rebranding announcement, but the online pre-launch marketing for the group’s 4G LTE network suggests that LTE will be offered under the new convergent brand rather than Libercom. The telco also operates a fixed and wireless broadband division branded ‘Kanakoo’ (offering ADSL, WiMAX and CDMA access), but it has not been confirmed whether this brand name is being discontinued.