By Emma Okonji
National telecommunications operator, Globacom, has signed a $750 million (N116.25 billion) agreement with Huawei Technologies, a leading global ICT solutions provider, to expand the capacity of the Glo network.
Speaking at the signing of the partnership agreement in Lagos, Globacom’s Group Chief Operating Officer, Mohamed Jameel, explained that the network enhancement project was part of the 10th anniversary plan to enhance the experience of the millions of subscribers on the Globacom network.
“After 10 years in business, we decided to upscale our network 10-fold to the very latest technology in global telecommunications.
“The massive expansion project will involve network upgrade and overhaul of infrastructure across the country as well as expansion and densification projects that will on completion in six months, enable the network to cater more for its existing and potential subscribers,” Jameel said.
He said 2013 is a special year for Globacom. “It is our 10th anniversary and we have been the network of choice for Nigerians because of the unprecedented manner with which we pioneered various technologies and products in the market,” he stated.
Huawei expressed excitement about the opportunity given to the firm by Globacom to handle the network expansion project, describing it as the biggest network expansion project it has handled in Nigeria.
“This is a huge expansion project. We promise Globacom and its teeming subscribers that we will meet their expectations and deliver a network they will all be proud of. Globacom is definitely going places,” said David Fan, Huawei’s Vice-President, West Africa.
He noted that Globacom and Huawei were culturally similar as global brands from emerging markets, adding that they would provide the company with Long Term Evolution (LTE or 4G) services that would give Globacom the comparative advantage.
Under the partnership, Globacom will build new switches, increase mobile switching centres to ease congestion and construct an additional 4,000km of optic fibre cable to complement its existing fibre optic facility, which is the most extensive fibre coverage of Nigeria.
Glo has state-of-the-art IP/MPLS and TDM technologies (30 gigabyte capacity) to meet requirements of enterprise customers, video, voice and data services. The TDM network will also be upgraded to a fully integrated Generalised Multi-protocol Label Switching (GMPLS).
Part of the upgrade will also include the installation of new base stations and densification of existing ones; setting up of three new mini call centres across the country to take care of the vast increase in subscriber figures; and upgrade of the radio access network which will ensure that data customers enjoy unparalleled speed and reliability.
“This is in line with our commitment to provide our customers world-class information, communication and technology (ICT) services through constant deployment of latest technologies.
“We will stay committed to our corporate promise at inception that Globacom would build a robust ICT network infrastructure that is comparable with the best in the world, and would consistently deliver value to its esteemed customers,” Jameel stated.
Delivering the vote of thanks, Globacom’s Executive Director, Legal Services, Mrs. Gladys Talabi, said the partnership was formed to provide subscribers on the network with unlimited possibilities.