KENSAT TO DROP VSAT CHARGES BY "AS MUCH AS 85%" AHEAD OF MONOPOLY ENDING

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Kensat last week announced that it would slash its VSAT charges "by as much as 85 per cent". Levy Maitamei, the Kensat Brand Manager said that it will now cost USD5,000 to install a new facility, down from USD35,000. Kensat is Telkom Kenya’s VSAT arm and with the current moratorium on VSAT licences has a largely unassailable monopoly on the sale of VSAT bandwidth.

"We have dropped the entry point levels and made it affordable because we want small organisations to look at Vsat as an alternative means of sorting out their communication needs," Maitamei said in an interview last week.

Among the benefits offered by Kensat’s Vsat terminals include giving support to two way data voice, multimedia and provide one-way video communications.

Telkom’s exclusivity in major market segments is set to end with the licensing of a Second National Operator (SNO) by June this year. Over the years, competition with illegal VSAT users has been stiff. In the data network market segment, Telkom has lost a great deal of business to Internet Service Providers who have redirected traffic from TKL’s leased lines to the new licensed data networks. However, according to Maitamei, "We do not want to profit from the sale of equipment but on the level of service that we are providing," Maitamei said.

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