Vox has finalised and lit up the first three precincts in Richards Bay, the first non-metropolitan town in its National Long Distance Fibre Project which was launched in October 2016.
With a thriving industrial and mining sector, combined with the harbour, Richards Bay met the key criteria required to build a business case for fibre infrastructure investment, one that becomes the starting point of the long- distance fibre initiative.
“It is one thing creating the infrastructure and another connecting Richards Bay to other cities. We evaluated our options and could easily have gone via Durban or Ballito. But the route along the eastern leg of the country, along the N4 seemed like the best option, enabling us to deliver a better connectivity experience to the smaller towns along the route,” says Jacques du Toit, CEO of Vox.
Vox has engaged with over 440 customers over the last few months and in the process signed up over R662 000.00 in fibre sales.
Adds du Toit, “Our efforts at the moment are centred around delivering the remaining 15 precincts in Richards Bay and we are aiming to having this completed in the next 18 months. We did unfortunately experience some delays which were beyond our control such as issues with soil conditions and received way leaves from council which was later than originally expected, but despite these challenges we are on track with the completion of the communications network. Thereafter, we anticipate that the next viable town will be Middelburg”
The company has previously stated that economic factors need to be considered and while it isn't immediately possible to deploy fibre in every single town, Vox is looking at ways of deploying wireless links via a high capacity backhaul to the towns along the eastbound leg of the country.
“Partnership with the WISPS will be a critical enabler for better connectivity in the small towns and we are looking forward to advancing these as we make our way back along the N4 route towards Gauteng,” concludes Du Toit.