Two more infrastructure Companies (InfraCos) have emerged with the licence approval awarded Zinox Technologies Limited and Brink Integrated Solutions Limited, bringing the total number of InfraCos to four.
In a statement by the nation’s regulatory body, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the Board has approved Zinox to operate in the South East, while Brink will operate in the North East. It will be recalled that IHS Towers and MainOne Company were in 2015 awarded the first set of licences.
NCC had in 2014, set up mechanism to license InfraCos that will provide broadband infrastructure across the six geopolitical zones and promised them incentives that will facilitate their rollout plans and minimise the cost implication. In January 2015, the Commission, as part of its bid to grow infrastructure, awarded InfraCo licenses to MainOne and IHS for Lagos and North Central geo-political zones respectively. This signified an opportunity to deepen infrastructure investments in Nigeria and to assure that the Broadband future which is critical to the growth of the economy is achieved.
The statement from the Commission which was signed by the Director of Public Affairs, Tony Ojobo, reads in part: “The Infraco licences are based on the NCC’s Open Access Model (OAM) in line with the National Broadband Plan (NBP) of (2013 – 2018). By provisions of the NBP, Nigeria is expected to attain 30 percent broadband penetration by 2018. As part of the initiative to achieve this, NCC, as the driver of this process, has so far licenced a number of companies to stimulate broadband penetration. These include Bitflux Communications Limited (Bitflux) for 2.3 Ghz and MTN Nigeria for the 2.6 Ghz licences. Other licences are in the pipeline in this process. As at December, 2017, Nigeria had attained 22% broadband penetration.”
According to the Commission, with the licensing of four Infracos, namely MainOne Cable, IHS, Zinox Technology and Brinks Solutions, there are three more licencees waiting for approval to bring total number to seven. The three more InfraCos are to cover the South South, North West and South West regions.