Botswana Fibre Networks Ltd (BoFiNet) is a wholesale provider of national and international telecommunication infrastructure.
Botswana Fibre Networks Ltd (BoFiNet) is a wholesale provider of national and international telecommunication infrastructure. BoFiNet’s mandate is to provide and operate a world class telecommunications backbone network infrastructure which will drive connectivity and economic growth. BoFiNet services retail organizations in the telecommunications industry such as Botswana Telecommunications Corporation (BTCL), Mascom Wireless and Orange Botswana, amongst others.
BoFiNet is owned by the Botswana Government. It was established in 2012 following Government separation of the incumbent operator, BTC, into two separate organizations: BoFiNet, and BTC Ltd, which will be partially privatized once the separation is complete. BoFiNet has been established as a commercial and self-sustainable business and has a completely independent strategy as well as structures separate from BTC. The structural separation was recommended to allow BTC to focus on downstream retail offerings. BoFiNet, on the other hand, operates, focuses upon and improves the backbone network and wholesale market. This is expected to improve competitiveness in the downstream telecommunications market and confidence from wholesale customers that BoFiNet acts in their interest. There is also a potential for alternative revenue generation for the Botswana Government through regional transit services and utilization of excess capacity on the International assets.
BoFiNet is a wholesale provider of telecommunications distributing to retail telecommunication companies already in existence in Botswana and does not sell directly to end users. BoFiNet was established due to Botswana wholesale customers being dissatisfied with current fibre network wholesale offerings and services, with some even beginning to build their own. In addition, the prohibitively high price of connectivity in the market, which limits take-up of services, played a role in the need for an organization such as BoFiNet. Moreover, the wholesale layer in Botswana is generally poorly serviced and the existing fibre infrastructure is under-utilized, failing to maximize the investment Government has made in the network.
In recent years the Botswana Government has supported three significant relevant investments, which will all move to be managed by BoFiNet:
- Development of the National fibre network, in particular in the trans-Kalahari region and metro fibre networks in Gaborone and Francistown
- Acquisition of stakes in the EASSy and WACS submarine cables
- A dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) system which is designed to use to its full potential the national fibre network (this system is currently being installed and is not yet operational)
BoFiNet provides an average of at least 10–12 fibre pairs, allowing for maximum efficiency and capability, as compared to the single fibre pair and single wavelength on the Trans-Kalahari ring previously provisioned by BTC. BoFiNet has the capabilities to supply other regional countries including: South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and Zambia.
BoFiNet believes firmly in its core values which include reliability, security, efficiency and transparency, innovation, and accessibility. It strives to uphold these values in all aspects of the business.
BoFiNet is run by six Board of Directors. The Board in turn recently appointed a new CEO Mr Mabua Lesego Mabua, who oversees the management and strategic direction of the organisation. BoFiNet’s offices are based in Gaborone, Botswana.