Safaricom #ticker:SCOM increased the number of homes it has connected to its internet fibre network by 32 percent to 142,000 in the year ended March 2020, riding on a growing demand.
The telco said in its 2020 sustainability report that it has expanded its fibre optic footprint by 34.3 percent to 9,000 kilometres, enabling it to serve more workers and families during Covid-19 work-from-home restrictions.
The number of enterprise buildings connected to the network have increased by 63 percent to 3,960.
Businesses, however, accounted for the fastest jump in connections to the fibre service, with a 99 percent rise to 11,911.
Safaricom said the growth was achieved due to a Sh36 billion investment that enabled it to add 2,284 Base Transceiver Stations and 2,300 kilometres more of fibre optic cable.
“We invested Sh36 billion during the year in the modernisation of equipment and expanded our reach ..., which not only enabled us to meet the surge in demand for voice and data triggered by the lockdown, but to also support remote workers and families,” said the telco.
“We will continue our aggressive roll out of fibre connectivity to support remote working, learning and general connectivity.”
The firm added that its accelerated roll out of our fibre optic network has enabled it to win small and medium-sized enterprises as well as Small Offices-Home Offices (SOHOs).
The increased fibre connections deepened Safaricom’s fixed internet market share, pushing it to the lead position.
The firm’s share of the fixed internet connections rose to 33.5 percent in the three months to June, reclaiming the market lead from Zuku.
The Communications Authority (CA) latest industry report shows that Safaricom had 207,398 subscribers at the end of June while the Wananchi-owned Zuku had 201,605 or 32.5 percent of the market.
“With the Covid-19 pandemic, many consumers continue to adopt video-conferencing services as they work from home, access online entertainment and streaming Video-on-Demand services,” said CA.