Leading Tier-2 Internet Service Provider Ecoband Networks has chosen Workonline Communications Group, one of the largest IP transit providers on the African continent, to expand their footprint into South Africa.
The agreement will benefit Ecoband's customers, including those in West Africa, allowing for lower latency – of around 66ms between Cape Town and Accra. The better-quality performance, with a more attractive commercial model, is in high demand from enterprises on the continent. The move also supports the objective of African network operators to keep Internet traffic destined for the African continent, on the African continent.
As many content networks have now deployed in South Africa, the country is a critical hub providing access to the same content networks which can be reached in Europe. This means that should the Ecoband routes to Europe fail, their customers will be able to seamlessly access the same content in South Africa.
By leveraging Workonline’s highly interconnected South African network, Ecoband customers will enjoy the most efficient routes possible to key Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) and cloud computing platforms, housed in South Africa. The key peering points will be in Johannesburg at NAPAfrica and JINX.
Head of Interconnection and Peering at NAPAfrica, Michele McCann, commented on the move: “We are excited to have Ecoband Networks join the NAPAfrica community. Currently at NAPAfrica IXP there are over 530 networks connected servicing 26 different African countries. With Ecoband connecting to NAPAfrica, Ghana, DR Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso and Mali will have access to key content and cloud providers such as Amazon, Facebook, Microsoft, Netflix, and more.“
Ecoband International says that the move is made on the back of their successful experience with Workonline in Ghana. “Workonline has provided the best uptime of any of our upstream providers. Their network has proven to be the most stable, and with physical presence and engineering support, they are actively involved in local Internet growth. It’s important to us to have an African IP transit provider who is committed to keeping traffic local without degrading the quality of service,” says Alexander Sulzberger, CEO of Ecoband Networks.
Workonline offers high capacity, low-latency and high stability IP transit and connectivity services up to speeds of 100Gbps at all major Internet hubs across sub-Saharan Africa. The pan-African nature of Workonline’s network allows them to keep traffic on the continent (without necessarily routing it via Europe or other continents), whilst ensuring the most optimal path when delivering traffic outside the continent.
“This is another important step towards increasing the quality of intra-African traffic whilst keeping traffic on the continent. Ecoband Networks is a great example of how it is possible to build an African-born world-class network,” says Benjamin Deveaux, Head of Business Development for Workonline Group.