DRC – Canadian leading supplier of mobile and broadband wireless infrastructure solutions NuRAN has signed a contract with Orange to build a network for it and other operators in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Under the deal, Québec-based NuRAN will build 2,000 new solar-powered towers over the next 40 months throughout DRC, serving up to 10 million people.
“The social and environmental impact as well as our commitment to sustainable development embodies NuRAN’s mission and vision to connect the world, one connection at a time,” Francis Létourneau (pictured), CEO of NuRAN, said.
NuRAN put the value of the contract at up to US$395 million and the company confirmed it will be “partnering with Orange DRC and various multi-network operators” in a network-as-a-service (NaaS) arrangement.
The contract will run for a minimum term of 10 years for each site, including networking equipment as well as antennas, cabling, solar power systems, towers, and related installation services.
“We are impressed with the technology and scalability that NuRAN brings to efficiently reach remote locations reliably, a key to sustaining GDP growth”Ben Cheick Haidara – CEO, Orange, Orange DRC
The agreement features a revenue sharing structure including a minimum guaranteed monthly fee per site built for the first five years.
The contract covers a service that will at first deliver 2.75G services.
Létourneau said: “Based on our estimates the 2,000 towers will provide 2.75G connectivity to up to 10 million people, or 11.5% of the DRC population, that currently have to travel just to make a phone call.”
However, during the term of the contract, Orange DRC may request a site upgrade in order to deploy internet services requiring a capacity greater than that offered by 2.5G — to 3G, 3.5G or 4G.
NuRAN said that after the initial 40-month term, and once all sites are fully operational, it expects gross revenue to be over US$32 million per year.
NuRAN’s local operating subsidiary will earn Ebitda of over 50%, said the company.
Ben Cheick Haidara, chairman and CEO of Orange DRC, said: “We are impressed with the technology and scalability that NuRAN brings to efficiently reach remote locations reliably, a key to sustaining GDP growth.”
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