In 2021, one in five people in sub-Saharan Africa lived in an area without mobile broadband coverage, according to the GSMA. This is a staggering 210 million African individuals who have limited connectivity as a result of living in rural or difficult-to-reach areas. The World Bank projected that a 10% increase in mobile internet penetration in Africa could translate to a 2.5% increase in its gross domestic product GDP, which makes this population an important participant in economic development.
Intelsat, with its unique combination of one of the largest in-service satellite constellations and extensive terrestrial and subsea infrastructure, is a major player in driving the strategic development of Africa.
Intelsat, the foundational architects of satellite technology and global satellite operator, has recognized Africa’s digital connectivity needs since its inception in 1965. The company continues to bring satellite resources to Africa because Intelsat believes that improved quality of life and economic prosperity rely on a connected Africa where rural communities have access to essential services, such as healthcare, education, and financial services.
In Africa, Intelsat’s simple and accessible satellite solutions have enabled partners to expand their network coverage in banking, mining, oil and gas industries, and government organizations and help drive up the ubiquity and reliability of cellular networks. Intelsat’s technology empowers service providers that depend critically on their ability to communicate, and its solutions also help mobile operators address the challenges they face in cost-effectively connecting remote communities.
Bringing mobile broadband connectivity to the most rural parts of Africa requires hybrid networks and innovative business models to truly close the connectivity gap and the business case. For example, with its partners, Intelsat hosted the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Connectivity Forum in Kinshasa in June 2022. This forum set the stage for conversation and implementation plans for extending Intelsat’s fully integrated hybrid networks, new business models, and creative partnerships to accelerate robust network infrastructure that would provide a great foundation for endless opportunities in Africa.
Intelsat’s commitment to empowering Africa goes beyond providing connectivity.
Intelsat also focuses on digital literacy and STEM education as catalysts for social and economic development. We coordinated with MaxIQ Space in Africa to deliver a space-focused STEM learning program to young adults across the African continent. These students develop satellite design solutions to world problems, such as making cities and communities more sustainable and creating solutions to combat climate change. Year three of the STEM partnership will be launched in late Fall 2022.
Our commitment to Africa is enduring with our local presence in three regional offices, our highly motivated team, and our three new Customer Operations Centers (one of which is based in South Africa) to continue to provide superior customer service to our customers in their own region and language, progressing our multi-orbit network and service strategy, and serving customers every day with the excellence for which we are known.
Intelsat operates the world’s most trusted satellite telecom network. We apply our unparalleled expertise and global scale to connect people, businesses, and communities, no matter how difficult the challenge. Intelsat is building the future of global communications with the world’s first hybrid, multi-orbit, software-defined 5G network designed for simple, seamless, and secure coverage precisely when and where our customers most need it. Follow the leader in global connectivity and “Imagine Here,” with us, at Intelsat.com.