[business daily africa] Alcatel Lucent, one of the two large undersea fibre optic construction companies, handed over the East African Submarine System (EASSy) to its shareholders last week.
This is nine years after the mooting of the idea of the cable by telecom operators in the region, which was later to be dogged by ownership and operational problems causing major delays in its operationalisation.
As a matter of fact, EASSy was meant to be the first cable on the east coast of Africa, but SEACOM and later TEAMS took advantage of the disagreements in the consortium and rolled out faster.
Meaning both cable systems got to the market earlier and therefore managed to sell their capacity ahead of EASSy, which had a first movers advantage.
With the first mover’s advantage gone, and entering the market a late third, EASSy has a herculean task in selling its capacity especially in Kenya.
They have to come out aggressively and provide a very attractive value proposition to its customers.
The consortium is made up of 21 telecom operators and including Telkom Kenya who are the anchors in Kenya.
EASSy should rethink entry strategy