By Evotel – To get every person in the country connected to a fast and reliable fibre network is one of Evotel’s aims. The company recently rebranded and donned a new jacket to celebrate its growth over the past five years. With this, it also reconfirmed its mission – providing Fibre For Everyone.
Consumers in major metropoles, such as Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban have easy access to fast fibre networks with traditional copper and ADSL connections even being discontinued in favour of the latest technologies. Residents in smaller towns across the country, however, still have to make do with these older technologies to access the internet. Fibre has become a necessity for all consumers and businesses, irrespective of where they are, to ensure development, prosperity and success. Fibre can no longer be seen as a nice-to-have.
“We have made it our mission to provide every South African a connection to fibre. It is, at present, the fastest way of connecting to the internet, to do business and to communicate with family and friends, as the world becomes smaller and smaller,” says Bradley Bekker, Head of Business Development at Evotel.
“As a committed Fibre Network Operator (FNO), servicing our customers and giving them access to fast and reliable fibre connections is of great importance to us. We are proud that we are making inroads to our promise and doing just that – connecting more people to the internet through our fibre network.”
Small town development
In the past couple of months Evotel has successfully installed fibre networks in a number of, often overlooked, smaller towns across the country. The company has granted fibre access to approximately 30 000 residences in 2020 alone.
“We have installed fibre networks in Newcastle, Krugersdorp and Randfontein and we are in the process of rolling out in Witbank, Welkom and Lenasia South for example. We are also in the process of having discussions with a number of towns and municipalities to install fibre networks for those communities in the near future,” Bekker adds.
Residents of these smaller towns are appreciative that Evotel has decided to bring fibre to their doorstep and for investing in their economies; especially with the effects of the COVID-19 lockdown and restrictions have seen a great decline in business in these areas.
Njabulo Mabaso, Newcastle Business Forum Chairperson has said that it means a lot for Newcastle that Evotel is investing in the town. “We are grateful for the opportunities Evotel is providing us with. Working with them and establishing a long working business relationship between Newcastle businesses and Evotel is a blessing,” he said.
Mabuso is also pleased that Evotel cares and is trying to involve as many small local contractors as possible. “It will mean a future income for these businesses to do maintenance of the network after the installation is complete. It is a lifetime thing not just now.”
Boldwin Distributors’ CEO, Willem Boshoff said: “I am very excited about Evotel’s investment in our community. It is good to plough back into the communities you operate in. Companies must be made to feel that they are needed and have a place in the society and that is what Evotel is doing. This is the way to make a difference and encourage growth.”
Free fibre for schools
In line with Evotel’s promise of providing uncompromised services, the company has also started a Fibre For Schools project whereby Evotel undertakes to provide free internet connections to all the schools that fall under the coverage areas of their network.
“We truly care for the consumers’ wellbeing and aim to assist wherever we can to better the lives of citizens where we install our networks, over and above giving them access to a reliable communications network,” says Bekker.
This Fibre For Schools project is based on the same principle of laying fibre to build smart cities, but now only for schools and to establish ‘smart-schools’ without the schools needing to expend any money for the infrastructure. It is one of the ways Evotel gives back to the communities they operate in.
The main focus of this initiative is to provide learners with the ability to be successful, seeing that they are our future. “We want them to be successful, as they are the leaders of tomorrow.”
Learners are not the only beneficiaries of free access to a fibre connection. The schools as a whole, including teachers and administrative staff, also benefit by working in an environment that is equipped with the latest fibre technology available to run a school in current times.
Evotel is providing a 200Mbps line or 1Gbps line if there is a point-of-presence (POP) connection close by. This saves schools in the region of R24 000 per annum on leasing and running a fibre line. “We care about the future of South Africa and its youth which is why we decided to sponsor the fibre infrastructure for schools and ensure the success of our youth’s education,” Bekker explains.
Says Huttenpark school, deputy principal, Mr Llewellyn Gray: “Data has become a scarce resource and with Evotel’s donation we can now follow a more blended learning path of educating the youth. We can now more easily incorporate multimedia with networked data-projectors in our classrooms together with real-time tracking of world events as subject material for students.”
Further to investing in the economies of the areas the company has fibre network infrastructures, Evotel also supports other institutions as part of its Corporate Social Investment (CSI) initiative. Evotel is an animal-loving organisation and therefore focusses its support on animal rescue. “We are, wherever possible, assisting the SPCA. We supply them with free fibre internet access and in some cases where needed, we sponsor upgrades and the upkeep of the premises and kennels.
“We are ecstatic for the help Evotel has given us by supplying us with much-needed access to a fast reliable network connection that makes life easier and quicker. Anything that is progress and saves time to allocate our efforts to save an animal is much appreciated,” says Heather Gero, Treasurer of the Newcastle SPCA Society.
Being a company that is focussed on the improvement of people’s lives by providing fast and secure fibre internet connectivity to homes, Evotel is adamant in its commitment to uplift entire communities in any way it can.
“We believe in helping people and organisations to prosper. Our additional investment in communities is just another way we aim to help in the overall development of that community and town. We are simply keeping to our promise of providing people with a fast and reliable fibre network connection that will suit their needs, but are also doing so much more,” Bekker concludes.