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Kenya Data leases KPLC fibre

NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 18 – Kenya Data Networks (KDN) has signed a five-year lease agreement for access to the Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) fibre optic network on the Nairobi-Mombasa power transmission line for an annual fee of Sh27 million.

KDN Chief Executive Officer Kai Wulff said the partnership with KPLC would offer an alternative route for data traffic that is now going through the existing fibre cables buried in the ground providing better uptime on the Internet and corporate Wide Area Networks.

“Our customers can now enjoy better uptime on their network as we continue to improve on the redundancy of our terrestrial fibre optic network,” Mr Wulff said.

He added that the vandalism that has occasioned a few outages on KDN client’s networks would be outdated with the partnership.

According to KPLC Managing Director, Eng Joseph Njoroge, the five-year lease of the pair of fibres, will earn the company Sh135 million adding the fibre optic cable installation was a component of a larger Sh1.9 billion System Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system modernisation.

The deal makes KDN the fourth telecommunications firm to sign a deal with the power distributor. Listed mobile phone operator, Safaricom, took up a pair of the fibres in a 20-year lease for Sh288 million, while Wananchi group and Jamii Telecommunications Ltd, in a five-year renewable lease of one pair of fibres each, will pay Sh27 million per year.

The move is also aimed at diversifying KPLC’s revenue base.

The SCADA system is used for the effective and efficient management of operations of KPLC’s nationwide power transmission and distribution grid. Installation of the fibre optic cable on the 500 km Nairobi-Mombasa route was completed last year, while installation of the cable on the western route and on other transmission lines is expected to be complete and available for use by July this year.

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Eng Njoroge said KPLC would leverage this investment by offering extra capacity on it to private sector on commercial basis to diversify its revenue base.

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The move is also aimed at diversifying KPLC’s revenue base.

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