In an interview with TechCentral on Wednesday, Nyati said the MTN unit in charge of fibre roll-out — its enterprise division, headed by Alpheus Mangale — has been given a “clear mandate to accelerate and move as fast as possible”.
“We may look at making some acquisitions to make sure we move quicker,” he said, adding that it will also work with existing fibre providers to offer services to end users.
“Fibre to the home, to the business, to whatever, we want to be there big time,” Nyati said.
“Ultimately, it’s not just going to be about those pipes, but the content that will flow across them. [MTN’s] digital business is looking at all sorts of possibilities.”
But Nyati said a big challenge to accelerating roll-out is securing rights of way and other approvals from municipalities. All operators have this challenge, not only MTN.
He said it is MTN’s intention to build a significant rival to Telkom in fixed lines, but declined to divulge the number of fibre broadband lines the company is pursuing.
Nyati’s remarks come just days after MTN South Africa chief technology officer Eben Albertyn said that the operator supports the open-access model for the deployment of FTTH infrastructure in South Africa.
MTN said it believes that an open-access business model provides customers and independent Internet service providers that use its FTTH networks with “flexibility and a seamless and distinct customer experience”.
In a statement, MTN said it has “successfully deployed FTTH to the gated community of Monaghan Farm outside Johannesburg” and is now “trenching in a number of suburbs, including Parkmore, Morningside and Lonehill in Johannesburg”.
“MTN South Africa is committed to an open-access network environment in which it supplies world-class fibre infrastructure for service providers to offer residential customers solutions that provide high-speed Internet connectivity,” Albertyn said.
MTN defines an open-access network as a flexible platform that allows Internet service providers to integrate the services they provide to end users with MTN’s infrastructure. “This in turn will enable a range of service providers to provide their customers with connectivity services via the MTN network,” the company said. — © 2015 NewsCentral Media