Since 2010, NetOne, Zimbabwe’ second largest mobile telecoms operator has been expanding its infrastructure in a phased network project that was launched to expand its coverage.
It’s the same project that saw the network introduce LTE services across Zimbabwe in 2015.
Now that the project is entering its third phase, NetOne has outlined plans to install 3,000 new base stations in 500 new sites. According to the Herald, these details were recently shared by Brian Mutandiro, the acting CEO of NetOne.
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The additional infrastructure is expected to give NetOne the capacity to connect 10 million subscribers at a time. NetOne currently has 4.3 million active subscribers and it plans to sign on 5 million more subscribers.
This network expansion drive requires a $485 million investment, an amount which will likely be secured through NetOne’s principal owner, the Zimbabwean government.
The first two phases of the project were funded through a facility secured from the Chinese government and guaranteed through Zimbabwe-China State relations.
If successfully completed the network project could give NetOne the largest local network ahead of the current market leader, Econet Wireless which has 6.7 million active subscribers.