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Liquid Telecom delivers internet to pupils at remote Kenya primary school

Liquid Telecom delivers internet to pupils at remote Kenya primary school

In September 2016, Liquid Telecom Kenya partnered with BRCK Education to deliver world-class internet to the remote Kiltamany Primary School in northern Kenya.

Kiltamany is approximately 160km from the nearest town and 20km from the nearest telecoms base station, which made it difficult for BRCK to connect its Kio Kit; an award-winning rugged ‘Digital School in a Box'.

Watch our new video to find out how Liquid Telecom Kenya worked alongside BRCK to transform the speeds of the school's new KioKits, connecting the school with the rest of the region.

MTN Group

MTN Group

In August 2015, MTN Group and Liquid Telecom entered into a partnership to extend their footprint across Africa, exploring ways to jointly offer customers access to the largest fixed and wireless footprint across the continent.

Building on this partnership, Liquid Telecom has since successfully deployed a long-distance fibre route across South Africa with MTN Group as an anchor tenant. The project was delivered on time and on budget, helping MTN Group extend its reach across South Africa and reaffirming Liquid Telecom's position as a leading wholesale managed fibre network infrastructure partner.

 

Customer

Launched in 1994, the MTN Group is a leading emerging market operator, connecting subscribers in 22 countries in Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

The MTN Group is listed on the JSE Securities Exchange in South Africa under the share code: “MTN”.

As of 30 April 2016, MTN recorded 230.3 million subscribers across its operations in Afghanistan, Benin, Botswana, Cameroon, Cote d'Ivoire, Cyprus, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Republic, Iran, Liberia, Nigeria, Republic of Congo (Congo-Brazzaville), Rwanda, South Africa, Sudan, South Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Uganda, Yemen and Zambia.

Challenges

The partnership between Liquid Telecom and MTN Group covers wholesale, carrier-to-carrier, high-speed broadband, enterprise and fixed data services, and enables both parties to access each other's fixed and wireless networks in countries on the African continent.

The partnership took on a new dimension in South Africa last year when Liquid Telecom began a project to connect the city of Polokwane in the north western province of Limpopo with Centurion; a region located between Pretoria and Johannesburg.

MTN Group was a key anchor tenant on the new route, which is designed to support the demand for reliable and high-speed connectivity across South Africa.

Liquid Telecom had just 12 months to complete the project, which included securing ‘wayleave' application approvals required to carry out work on privately-owned land as well as managing subcontractors.

The project also had to overcome some issues related to ground conditions for trenching.

In spite of this, it was completed on time and on budget.

Solutions

In November 2015, Liquid Telecom completed the long distance fibre route connecting Polokwane and Centurion.

The route provides MTN Group and other anchor tenants with almost unlimited capacity on a national basis, enabling access to two of South Africa's major hubs.

As an anchor tenant, MTN Group has the advantage of owning dark fibre on the route, which now forms part of its wider transmission network across South Africa.

Furthermore, Liquid Telecom is currently in the process of deploying another long distance fibre route with MTN as anchor tenant. The 1037km route will stretch from Polokwane east and southwards all the way to Ladysmith in the Uthukela District of KwaZulu-Natal, and is expected to take 24 months to complete.

The first phase of the project is due for completion in 2016.

Results

Thanks to Liquid Telecom deploying the new route connecting Polokwane and Centurion, MTN Group has been able to extend its network reach across South Africa.

The route further allows MTN Group to serve its customers with gigabit-speed services supported by Liquid Telecom's network maintenance SLAs.

By deploying additional routes, Liquid Telecom is introducing greater diversity and competition to the South African market, offering MTN Group and other telecoms operators alternative routes for network traffic.

The route is also further testament to Liquid Telecom's commitment as a partner for carriers as they look for greater access across the region.

Testimonial

“Liquid Telecom successfully delivered the project connecting Polokwane and Centurion in South Africa within time, cost and scope.”
Devan Chetty, General Manager Core, IP & Transmission Network Planning & Optimisation, MTN South Africa

Liquid Telecom Kenya connect Nakuru County with free wi-fi

Liquid Telecom Kenya connect Nakuru County with free wi-fi

Liquid Telecom Kenya partnered with the Nakuru County Government to launch high capacity free Wifi in Nakuru. This has seen the residents of Nakuru County enjoy a free, fast and reliable public street Wifi connection, enabling rapid access to information vital for economic and educational advancement.

The project was awarded the prestigious Changing Lives award at the Africacom Awards, which recognises an inspiring initiative that has significantly impacted African communications in the community and contributed to economic and social development.

Liquid Telecom Kenya Nakuru Wifi Case Study from Liquid Telecom Group on Vimeo.

ZAMREN

ZAMREN

Zambian universities and research institutions get fast, reliable broadband: Liquid Telecom provides first cross-border link for research and education networks in east and southern Africa.

Who

ZAMREN (Zambia Research and Education Network) is a specialised internet service provider, dedicated to supporting research and education communities in Zambia. Improving education standards is vital to the economic development of many African countries, and by providing broadband connectivity to students, teachers and researchers, we've played an important part in the success of a number of regional education networks.

The Challenge

ZAMREN needed to find a supplier of reliable, high-speed cross-border connectivity. But cross-border networks are still rare in southern Africa. Most traffic passes onto satellite networks and is then transferred to hubs outside Africa and back again. This impacts on both price and latency. ZAMREN also wanted a broadband supplier with education sector experience and expertise.

The Solution

ZAMREN chose Liquid Telecom for many reasons. We've built the largest single fibre network in Zambia – over 1,200km long – the first fully-redundant network in the country. We supply Service Level Agreements unmatched by any other provider in Zambia. And we were also able to lay new fibre to cover the last mile from our existing network to ZAMREN establishments. After just five weeks of testing, the ZAMREN network went live in July 2012. Zambia's research and educational community are now linked for the first time, and can communicate with colleagues globally via the UbuntuNet Alliance's international network. In 2013, 15 establishments were using the ZAMREN network and a further eight will soon be connected. We're proud to have been central to this milestone for Zambian education.

Testimonial

“Our co-operation with Liquid Telecom has enabled ZAMREN to provide efficient, low-cost broadband to Research and Education Institutions (REIs) in Zambia. The result has been a 70% reduction in the cost of Internet access for ZAMREN's member institutions and now more dedicated bandwidth capacity for those institutions. This is positively impacting researchers, academic staff and students at our REIs in their core business of research and education.”
Bonny Khunga
CEO, ZAMREN

Econet

Econet

Liquid Telecom provides satellite backhaul for cellular base stations in rural Zimbabwe, helping Econet move closer to its goal of countrywide coverage and connect the unconnected. 

Who

Econet Wireless Zimbabwe is the country's largest provider of mobile cellular services. With large areas of Zimbabwe still without cellular cover, Econet hired Liquid Telecom to provide an advanced VSAT system.

The Challenge

Building and operating commercially sustainable networks in remote areas throws up problems including transporting kit on poor roads, generating power in areas with no electricity, and equipment maintenance.

The Solution

We helped Econet improve coverage by implementing a VSAT system which provides backhaul to their rural cellular base stations in Marymount, Masase and Sango Border Post. Our satellite connection includes:

  • a DVB-S2 shared bandwidth downstream carrier – enabling dynamic adjustment of bandwidth to suit demand
  • dedicated SCPC return links – an always-on connection utilising the latest modulation and coding techniques to maximise efficiency
  • guaranteed service levels for specific types of traffic, e.g. voice, SMS and Internet traffic.


Every BTS is connected to a VSAT which then uses a dedicated IP backhaul link back to a state-of-the-art VSAT hub in Harare. The VSATs, satellite backhaul link and hub are all provided by Liquid Telecom. Both the BTS and VSAT run on minimal power so they can be powered by solar. The result? Econet is now able to provide GPRS and EDGE coverage to even the most remote villages – changing people's lives today and in the future.

Testimonial

“Liquid Telecom has enabled us to provide cellular services to remote areas where it has always been extremely difficult for operators to make the business model work. Liquid has built a reliable and cost-effective VSAT link and, in the process, has helped change the lives of many people in Zimbabwe for the better.”
Francis Mahofa
General Manager, Network Planning and Deployment, Econet

AFB

AFB

Helping AFB to implement a fully managed lending solution, increase security and reduce financial loss resulting from fraudulent claims against their credit cards.

Who

AFB is a consumer finance company providing retail credit cards to over 15,000 customers across Africa. Liquid Telecom Payments implemented an end-to-end Managed Service Solution and helped significantly reduce fraud with the use of Biometrics.

The Challenge

AFB provides own-brand and co-branded closed loop credit cards. After the successful integration of our Managed Service Solution into their lending system, we were able to detect two types of fraud; application fraud, where end-users applied for multiple accounts using fake identities; and transaction fraud, where customers repudiate transactions on their cards. Both were resulting in significant financial loss for AFB.

The Solution

Our end-to-end managed solution includes high-speed international connectivity, transaction processing, routing, switching and professional services – as well as customised terminal applications and management software. A biometric solution was then implemented using biometric readers and server to enrol, store, match and verify data. Fingerprints are now a requirement for AFB card applications and transactions, reducing fraudulent applications and repudiated purchases.

Testimonial

“We think that Liquid Telecom Payments has developed the best biometric system available in Africa today and our business saw immediate benefits once the system went live”.
Karl Westvig
CEO, AFB

Econet Wireless Zimbabwe

Econet Wireless Zimbabwe

Helping to bring Africa's leading mobile money payment platform, Ecocash, to the world.

Summary

EcoCash is an innovative mobile payment solution that enables Econet customers to complete simple financial transactions. We helped launch Econet's new mobile money payment product by integrating the Ecocash platform with financial institutions and implementing over 10,000 POS terminals across Zimbabwe.

The Challenge

A long-standing wholesale customer of Liquid Telecom, Econet Wireless Zimbabwe provides telecommunications services and payment solutions. To ensure success of the new Ecocash product, they needed to open up the ecosystem by integrating their platform with financial institutions for transfer of funds between the end user, their Ecocash Wallets, banks and third party billers such as DSTV. POS terminals were also required to enable printing of customer and merchant receipts.

The Solution

We implemented a Postilion payments platform for payment switching, as well as HSMs (Hardware Security Modules) and Stratus fault-tolerant servers to ensure uptime. We developed Interfaces to financial institutions, the mobile money payment platform ‘Mobiquity' and third-party billers. And we supplied 10,000 POS terminals – as well as a customised terminal application and management system.

Testimonial

“Liquid's technical expertise, local understanding and previous experience integrating mobile money platforms with financial institutions meant there was simply no partner better placed to help us launch Ecocash. The resulting success has been phenomenal, with uptake by over 2.3m Zimbabweans in less than two years – over 30% of the country's adults.”
Econet Wireless Zimbabwe employer

The Sub Saharan Africa Region of a Large International Bank

 

Providing connectivity, hardware and software to replace the terminal estate and system across Sub Saharan Africa.

Summary

The terminal estate and offline transaction system used by the Sub Saharan Africa Region of this large bank was no longer strategically or financially viable. So a complete new solution was implemented by Liquid Telecom.

The Challenge

The existing terminal estate had limited functionality and was connected to systems not considered viable for upgrade. All transactions were offline and paper-based, presenting an increasing risk and higher interchange costs. The bank had to reduce Business As Usual operational and technical support, lower the cost and risk profile, and increase product reliability and quality. They also had to ensure future product development kept up with increasing competition and channel diversification.

The Solution

We provided a complete package covering transaction routing, switching and processing, a new terminal estate, applications and management software, as well as connectivity over our high-speed fibre network. This enabled online transactions, increased security and greatly reduced fraud risk and cost. Now, a customer can swipe a card in any of the 9 Sub Saharan countries and the transaction is carried over the Liquid network, authorised by the central switch and returned within seconds. The solution is secure, cost-effective and future-proof. And the new terminal estate offers product flexibility with functionality such as Host-to-Host Transaction Acquiring, Recurring Batch Transaction Processing and EMV.

“Our experience and expertise within the relevant African markets resulted in delivery excellence of an end-to-end solution that will be a benchmark for other global banks to follow”.

Norman Roberts-York
CEO, Liquid Telecom Payments

Edgars

Edgars

Helping Edgars increase sales and customer loyalty: Liquid Telecom connects retail stores across southern Africa.

Who

Edgar, a South African luxury clothing brand, needed to bring its infrastructure up to date, to help boost sales and improve customer loyalty.

The Challenge

Edgars is the largest non-food retailer in southern Africa with over 50 stores in Zimbabwe alone. But, until recently, only five stores had any voice or data connectivity and many essential functions such as stock re-ordering still used printed, mailed forms – wasting time and money. Plus, customers couldn't pay for goods using external credit cards, and couldn't even use their Edgars loyalty cards in every shop because the data wasn't supported.

The Solution

Edgars tasked Liquid Telecom with building a company-wide voice and data communications infrastructure to automate business processes, supported by a round-the-clock service desk, and with a guaranteed 99% network uptime. After an in-depth review of Edgars' needs and analysis of their infrastructure, our team built an MPLS VPN between the stores and the company in Bulawayo using a range of technologies. Now Edgars has a true network of stores – and by making customer purchases easier, has increased revenue too. In addition, automation of the logistical processes has increased flexibility, making Edgars more responsive. And Liquid Telecom has continuously met and exceeded the 99% uptime guarantee.

Testimonial

“From the moment we contacted Liquid Telecom, we have been impressed with the expertise and experience of its team. This is a company which has built a world- class network with outstanding customer service. The private network Liquid built for us has made our business much more efficient and cost-effective.”
Mbuso Ndlovu
IT Executive, Edgars

Africa Sun Group

Africa Sun Group

Summary:

African Sun Group is one of Zimbabwe's leading hotel chains. With internationally recognised brands and respected home-grown brands, the group operates hotels, resorts, casinos and timeshares in some of the country's prime tourist locations.

Thanks to Liquid Telecom, Africa Sun Group has been able to significantly improve the internet experience for its guests across all 11 of its hotels and resorts, enabling the group to migrate more systems online and better manage its customer internet usage and cost.

Customer:

African Sun Group operates 11 resorts and hotels located in highly-sought tourist destinations across Zimbabwe. This includes resorts and a safari lodge in and around the popular Victoria Falls, as well as locations in Nyanga, Kariba and the Great Zimbabwe National Monument. It also has hotels in major cities such as Harare and Bulawayo.

With a rich array of wildlife and captivating landscapes, tourism is one of the fastest growing industries in Zimbabwe. Africa Sun Group serves the country's growing number of international and business visitors with luxury, mid-range and value accommodation, through a mixture of home-grown brands and affiliated hotels under the InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) brand, such as Holiday Inn.

Challenges:

Wi-Fi access now forms an integral part of a hotel offering – which guests expect as much as they do electricity and water.

African Sun Group required a connectivity solutions provider with extensive reach across the country, which was able to deliver high-quality broadband services to all of its hotels and resorts. This included remote regions of the country, such as safari lodges with extensive grounds located within national parks.

It required ubiquitous connectivity so that its guests could enjoy Wi-Fi - whether in their room, by the pool or in a conference hall.

It also required next-generation voice and data services that could support the group's growth, helping it to better control the usage and cost of its voice and data services, as well as migrate more of its operating systems online.

Solutions:

In 2013, African Sun Group selected Liquid Telecom as its exclusive connectivity provider, and today the operator provides high-speed broadband services to all of its hotels and resorts across Zimbabwe.

Liquid Telecom operates the largest and most extensive fibre network in Zimbabwe. By connecting eight of African Sun Group's premier locations directly to our fibre network, Liquid Telecom offers greater reliability, higher bandwidth and lower latency.

In three remote locations where access to fibre is limited, Liquid Telecom provisioned a high-quality microwave solution, capable of fibre-like performance.

More than just a connectivity provider, Liquid Telecom delivers a number of value added services to African Sun Group. It has, for example, migrated the group's traditional landline services to Voice-over-IP (VoIP), and is able to offer managed SLAs for this and other types of traffic.

Liquid Telecom offers round-the-clock network support through its Network Operations Centre (NOC), and provides African Sun Group with a dedicated account manager to ensure any issues are resolved quickly and efficiently.

Results:

Today's travel consumers require mobility and easy real-time access to information. Liquid Telecom has been able to significantly enhance the customer experience at African Sun Group's hotels and resorts by providing seamless connectivity that guests can enjoy throughout the duration of their stay. African Sun Group has been able to introduce a Wi-Fi voucher scheme, which enables guests to connect multiple devices to the internet.

The introduction of VoIP provides guests with greater quality voice calls throughout their stay. All of this also helps African Sun Group to better manage and control the cost and usage of its voice and data services. Through delivering high-quality connectivity, Liquid Telecom also enables African Sun Group to grow its reach online and attract more customers to its hotels across Zimbabwe. The group, for example, has migrated its hotel reservation system online, making bookings more secure and efficient for its guests.

Liquid Telecom is continuing to explore ways to deliver even greater bandwidth to African Sun Group's hotels, ensuring their customers always have the very best internet experience throughout the duration of their stay.

Rainbow Tourism Group

Rainbow Tourism Group

Bringing reliable voice and data to Rainbow's employees and guests: Liquid Telecom provides a new network for prominent hospitality company.

Who

Rainbow Tourism Group is one of Zimbabwe's most respected hospitality companies. They turned to Liquid Telecom to guarantee a fast, reliable broadband services and the result was a new private network running over Liquid Telecom's fibre, which connects Rainbow's hotels to each other, to HQ and to the web.

The Challenge

Rainbow Tourism Group's existing network, a blend of WIMAX and satellite, had become slow, unreliable and expensive. Increasingly frustrated by the network's poor quality, they approached us to provide a modern and efficient voice and data solution across the entire company.

The Solution

After analysis of Rainbow's infrastructure, it was clear that the optimum solution was to deploy an MPLS VPN over Liquid Telecom's fibre network. The fibre already ran close to the majority of Rainbow's operations in Zimbabwe. A short expansion to the last mile was all that was needed to connect to Zimbabwe's fastest fibre broadband network. The VPN allows individual hotels to communicate with each other and their HQ. This means the booking and internal systems are now centralised, reducing paperwork and increasing efficiency. Employees and guests also benefit from fast voice and data services. With Liquid Telecom's help, Rainbow Tourism Group can focus on growing its business in quality accommodation, hospitality and conference facilities.

Testimonial

“There's no doubt that Liquid Telecom's fibre network is far more stable and reliable than either wireless or satellite that we have used in the past. Thanks to Liquid, our internal and external communications are faster, plus our guests are always able to make a call or get online.”
Tendai Madziwanyika
CEO, Rainbow Tourism Group