Altech backs Technology Concepts to become a Tier One provider

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

JSE-listed technology group Altech is putting its muscle behind its Internet business, Technology Concepts, with plans to turn it into a tier-one service provider. 

Altech bought Technology Concepts last April, before it signed a deal with undersea cable operator Seacom. Technology Concepts CEO Wayne de Nobrega says Altech has now given it the go-ahead to pursue a plan to become a tier-one provider, rivalling the likes of other tier-one providers such as MTN and Dimension Data’s Internet Solutions. 

De Nobegra says Technology Concepts will begin by opening up its own facilities in Teraco’s data centres and it will start building its own networks. 

The first data-centre facility will be opened in Johannesburg, and Technology Concepts will eventually extend its reach to the other big SA cities. 

He won’t say how much Technology Concepts is investing as part of the expansion plan. 

“We are working with Cisco to create a next-generation backbone network,” says De Nobrega. He says Technology Concepts will build links where it makes sense, and will lease links in other cases. 

As a group, Altech owns capacity on Seacom. However, the company is not using its Seacom capacity in SA yet. “We are buying Sat-3 capacity as part of our network to ensure redundancy on our international connectivity,” says De Nobrega. 

However, he says Technology Concepts will start to bring some of the capacity to SA shores. “We can scale up how much capacity is coming in as we need it,” he says. 

The next step for Technology Concepts will be to provide managed services over the network it is building. One of these services will be a voice-over-Internet Protocol solution. 

The company will make a more concerted effort to attract retail consumers. It will also target its regular corporate customer base, but will add services and products targeting the small business market. 

Like many network providers, Technology Concepts will also start providing wholesale services. “We will include a partner programme, selling white-labelled products,” he says.