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Cameroon – Telecom: Through its subsidiary Konnect Africa, the French group Eutelsat to tackle the Internet market in Cameroon

Through its subsidiary Konnect Africa, the French group Eutelsat tackles the Internet market in Cameroon
Written by Deckson N.

The Internet market, which has become very competitive in Cameroon in recent years with the multiplication of access providers, is being enriched by a new weight operator. It is Konnect Africa, the subsidiary of the French group Eutelsat specializing in the provision of satellite internet, which officially announced the launch of its activities on June 6 in nine African countries. These include Benin, Cameroon, Kenya, Lesotho, Nigeria, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania and Uganda.

In Cameroon, Konnect Africa is reaching a market in which mobile and fixed-line operators (Orange, MTN, Camtel and Nextell) and Internet service providers such as Vodafone, Ringo, YooMe and Creolink are on feet, and compete with seductive offers. However, the subsidiary of the Eutelsat group attacks the Cameroonian market with a comparative advantage: that of providing the Internet with satellite equipment, which allows the operator to cover the remote areas of the country, which are not very popular by other operators, whose activities are concentrated in the major metropolises of Cameroon, notably Yaoundé and Douala. Officially, these two capitals (political and economic) of Cameroon alone account for 80% of the local market for telecoms.

Konnect Africa, which will deploy Wi-Fi hotspots and “Pay as you go” market offers, intends to take advantage of the dynamism observed on the Internet market in Cameroon since the advent of 3G and 4G respectively in March and December 2015. Only one year after these technological changes in the field of telecommunications, access to the Internet in Cameroon increased by 16.5%, finally culminating at 18% at the end according to statistics revealed by Internet Live Stats, which will rank Cameroon among the three African countries (with Mali and Lesotho) with the highest increase in access to the Internet in 2016.

The Ericsson Mobility Report of June 2016 is even more admiring of the progression of access to the Internet in Cameroon. Indeed, according to the Swedish telecom operator, the Internet penetration rate in Cameroon had already reached 25.6% in 2015, the year of 3G and 4G, even surpassing the average in sub-Saharan Africa , Which was then only 20% over the same period.

In spite of its dynamism, the Internet market in Cameroon remains open, which justifies the attraction it exercises over operators such as Konnect Africa. Indeed, according to the Internet Live Stats, nearly 18 million Cameroonians do not yet have access to the Internet, since the population of potential Internet users in Cameroon was estimated at only 4.3 million people in 2016.

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Deckson N.

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