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Liquid Telecom nails US$180 million investment from UK’s CDC Group plc


Business Reporter

JOHANNESBURG – Africa’s leading telecommunications group Liquid Telecom, a subsidiary of Econet Global, has announced the completion and receipt of a US$180 million investment from CDC Group plc, the UK’s development finance institution.

The investment will enable Liquid Telecom to further expand its fibre footprint and to broaden its data centres and cloud services product portfolio across Africa, serving wholesale, enterprise and retail customers.

The investment was first announced in late 2018 when Liquid Telecom reached an agreement with CDC Group Plc, to invest $180m with the company.

The investment will enable Liquid Telecom expand its high-speed broadband connectivity to some of the most underserved communities across the African continent, including supporting Africa’s thriving tech start-up ecosystem with high-speed internet and cloud-based services.

Owned and managed by the UK Government, CDC Group supports companies that help poor countries grow and the $180m investment will enable Liquid Telecom increase its network expansion.

This builds on the Liquid Telecom’s award-winning Cape to Cairo terrestrial fibre link – often referred to as “the One Africa” broadband network, which took 10 years to complete and serves some of the most remote locations with the fastest network speeds in Africa – from Cape Town, through all the Southern, Central, and Eastern African countries, and has now reached Sudan and Egypt. The network passes through some of the most remote corners of the planet and continues to provide new opportunities to connect underserved communities.

“Our vision is to give every individual on the African continent the right to be connected by bringing reliable, high-speed broadband connectivity and cloud services to all. This includes businesses and communities in some of the most remote parts of the continent,” said Nic Rudnick, Group CEO, Liquid Telecom, when the deal was first mooted.

“We welcome CDC Group’s investment of $180m with Liquid Telecom since it will enable us to accelerate expansion along our award-winning Cape-to-Cairo route and further into Central and Western Africa. Once completed, it will bring significant economic and social benefits – from providing access to online educational resources to supporting national economies, creating more jobs and driving the adoption of new technologies. This is aligned to the vision of our Executive Chairman Strive Masiyiwa to not only connect Africa from North to South, but also from East to West.

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