The Togolese Republic, csquared and google today announced a major digital initiative that includes the arrival of “Equiano”, an undersea internet cable linking Portugal to South Africa. As the first landfall in Africa, the submarine cable will have a direct impact on internet connectivity in Togo, causing improved and affordable broadband internet access for millions of Togolese and West Africans in the region.
Equiano is essential and plays a strategic role in supporting Togo’s ambitious digitalization plans.
Representing the State, Société d’Infrastructures Numériques (SIN), a public telecommunications asset company, has strategically partnered with csquareda free-to-air wholesale broadband infrastructure company, to form a joint venture – Csquared Woezon. Csquared Woezon is a Togolese company with minority public shareholders, owned 56% by CSquared and 44% by SIN. The entity will be in charge of the maintenance and operation of the Equiano submarine cable as well as the existing terrestrial fiber optic networks of the e-Government and the Electric Community of Benin (CEB) located on Togolese territory. . Regarding the sale of international capacity, Csquared Woezon provide open access to all national and regional operators on an objective, transparent and non-discriminatory commercial basis, in accordance with industry standards and international best practices.
Commenting on the landing of Equiano, HE Madame Cina Lawson, Minister of Digital Economy and Digital Transformation of Togo declared, “Expanding broadband internet access is a fundamental part of our national digital development process as we strive to achieve the goals set out in our Digital Strategy 2025. As Togo continues to earn its place on the regional and international scene as a digital hub and an ecosystem conducive to innovation and investment, our collaboration with Google and CSquared to successfully land Equiano once again demonstrates Togo’s commitment to improving the public and social services for all citizens. so that they can benefit economically.”
Togo currently ranks as the sixth best country in Africa regarding the ease of doing business and Equiano, when switched on, will offer 20 times more bandwidth than any other cable currently serving West Africa, helping the country attract even more investment and boost its vibrant startup culture. According to a economic impact assessment from Equiano in Togo from Africa Practice and Genesis Analytics, it is estimated that the submarine cable will create approximately 37,000 new jobs between 2022 and 2025 and increase Togo’s economic output by an additional US$351 million over the same period.
Equiano’s arrival in Togo will not only strengthen Togo’s ability to successfully build and sustain digital infrastructure that will generate long-term positive economic benefits for Togo, but will also bring benefits to its West African neighbors.
Nitin Gajria, Managing Director of Google Sub-Saharan Africa commented, “The arrival of Equiano affirms Google’s commitment to the African continent, to support Africa’s digital transformation. We are delighted that Togo is Equiano’s first landing on the African continent, as it aligns with the country’s ongoing efforts to promote digital inclusion in Africa. We look forward to working closely with the Togolese government and Ministry of Digital Economy and Transformation as they continue to develop their digital infrastructure.”
Lanre Kolade, CEO of CSquared Group share, “CSquared is honored to be part of Togo’s digital strategy, a strategy focused on social inclusion and economic development that will transform the economy with accessible, secure and affordable broadband, across gender and geography. CSquared Woezon, our joint venture with Société d’Infrastructures Numériques [SIN] will enable the next generation of connected infrastructure on which the digital ecosystem, the economy and the government can run. Beyond Google’s Equiano landing in Togo, the joint venture will also manage and deploy fiber metros and the national backbone across the country, advancing Togo in its quest to become a digital hub in East Africa. West with connectivity in neighboring countries Ghana, Benin and Burkina. Faso.”
Attia Byll, Managing Director of SIN stated, “The SIN represents an important tool for the digital development plan of the Togolese territory. Our strategy is to operate and grow through public-private partnerships and create joint ventures with investors to achieve this goal. We are excited about the opportunities this partnership with CSquared and Google will bring to the Togolese people and the country as a whole.”