Ermano Quartero, managing executive of Vodacom Business, has announced his firm has implemented a range of broadband price cuts which will see business clients pay, on average, 50% less for broadband usage, BusinessDay reports.
Quartero said that the cut had been made possible by ‘increasing competition between undersea cable providers, which in turn creates a sustainable competitive international bandwidth market in South Africa.’ SEACOM, a 15,000km, 1.28Tbps cable system connecting South Africa with Europe and Asia, launched operations, pledging to reduce bandwidth charges across Africa.
The cable partially liberated the South African market, which had previously relied on a single submarine cable, the Telkom-controlled SAT-3, to provide the bulk of international traffic. On 20 November 2009 SEACOM expressed its disappointment in a lack of take-up in South Africa, stating that incumbent operators would need to take the lead and drop prices to see broadband expansion in the country.
However, Quartero claims that today’s cuts could spur on a spate of price reductions nationwide, saying: ‘This cut is absolutely permanent: the price can never come up, because the pressures are just too extreme.’