African Rainbow Capital (ARC) has invested in 20% of fixed and mobile data network operator Rain.
“We are delighted to partner with ARC and look forward to the strategic value they bring to the team,” says Paul Harris, Rain chairman. “In addition, they enhance our already significant BEE ownership credentials.”
ARC is a fully black-owned and controlled investment company.
“We focus on South African and African businesses that deliver exceptional returns on equity, and it is exciting to invest in a company that is at the start of its growth trajectory,” says Johan van Zyl, ARC co-CEO. “There is great demand in our country for fast, reliable and affordable data coverage and Rain promises to deliver just that.”
To date Rain has rolled out over 1 000 sites and 1 500 base stations, and is on track to meet its target of 2 000 sites by the end of the year and 5 000 within three years.
Rain CEO Duncan Simpson-Craib comments: “The additional equity capital raised from ARC, over and above the funding already in place, ensures that we have the capital to achieve our aggressive rollout targets over the next three years.”
Rain has recently entered into an agreement whereby Internet Solutions and its partners will provide clients with wireless broadband services powered by the Rain network. The LTE Advanced network, referred to as ‘fibre-in-the-sky’, is ideally positioned to be a pioneer in the future rollout of 5G networks.
Meanwhile, Ignite – the internet and communication technology services provider focused on South African SMEs – has added LTE-A services via the Rain network to its connectivity offering.
SMEs can select one of three month-to-month packages, and scale data up or down as requirements change.
Ignite’s first 250 LTE-A customers will pay just R999 for installation and setup fee, including a Huawei B618 router, discounted from the standard fee of R1,999.
“LTE-A connectivity is an attractive proposition for SMEs that need fibre-like Internet speeds, as well as the flexibility of quick service set-up,” says Tony Koutakis, executive head of Ignite.
“Fast, easy installation and improved mobile network coverage means that LTE-A offers SMEs distinct advantages over ADSL or fibre networks.”
SMEs can enjoy speeds of up to 100Mbps, depending on their distance from the nearest tower and congestion on the network.
Like most of the services available through Ignite, there is no contractual lock-in as LTE-A connectivity is billed month-to-month.
“SMEs often have lean, low-cost operations where decisions are made quickly, and even on-the-go. We built Ignite to mirror the agility and quick-to-market ethos of our clients, and as promised, we’re adding services through partners that have a similar philosophy,” says Koutakis.