Capacity Watch

HC2 Holdings, Inc. (HC2) announced on Thursday to sell 100% of its subsidiary Global Marine Group (GMG) to an investment affiliate of J.F. Lehman & Company, LLC (JFLCO). The sale includes GMG’s operating subsidiary Global Marine Systems Limited (GMSL), along with several joint ventures, and excludes the previously sale of GMG’s 49% joint venture Huawei Marine Networks Co., Limited (HMN). The total base consideration for 100% of GMG (excluding HMN) is approximately $250 million, and the total enterprise value of GMG is approximately $390 million.

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According to the French National Research Institue (IRD), scientists have for the first time shown that it is possible to detect the propagation of seismic waves on the seafloor using submarine telecommunications optical fiber cables. According to their research, this existing infrastructure could be used to detect earthquakes, as well as swell and underwater noise. The existing submarine cables will offer potential as billions of seismic sensors.

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Ciena, Internet2, and Juniper Networks confirmed last successfully passing live traffic over a 1,367-mile (2200km) circuit using a single 400 gigabit Ethernet link between Chicago and Denver, the first such occurrence for an advanced research and education (R&E) network. The live traffic ran cleanly during a trial between StarLight in Chicago and SCinet at the SC Conference in Denver this week on the 400 gigabit Ethernet link connecting two Juniper PTX 10003 core routers. 

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AT&T announced last week the activation the first 400G optical connection between Dallas and Atlanta. This 400G  optical connection is not a trial, it is carrying live internet traffic across AT&T's network for their customers. AT&T believes the 400G optical connection is a first in the industry, which offers a significant upgrade to their production network, built on flexible, low-cost white box hardware. The 400G Dallas/Atlanta facility was deployed on an SDN-enabled Ultra Long Haul (ULH) system from Ciena, with 400G pluggable transceivers from InnoLight and white box was supplied by UfiSpace.

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Orange announced at AfricaCom the construction of a new international backbone network in West Africa. This infrastructure will be built around a terrestrial fibre optic network coupled with submarine cables and will benefit from centralized supervision. This multi-regional West African network will connect to the rest of the world through various submarine cables and will link up all the main capital cities in the region: Dakar, Bamako, Abidjan, Accra, Lagos…

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Liquid Telecom announced on Wednesday the launch of the fastest direct land-based fibre link connecting East to West Africa. This breakthrough coast-to-coast digital corridor follows the completion of Liquid Telecom’s new high-capacity fibre link running 2,600-kilometre (km) across the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Liquid Telecom continues expanding its pan-African terrestrial fibre network rapidly.

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In a parntership with Ciena, Deutsche Telekom Global Carrier newly launched Encrypted Lambda service. The Encrypted Lambda service encrypts data on hardware located at the client’s site and protects it over Layer 1, the physical layer, while it is transmitted. This sets it apart from conventional solutions by allowing for larger data volumes with higher performance, lower costs and faster speeds. 

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Digital Realty and Interxion announced on Tuesday they have entered into a definitive agreement to combine their businesses to create a leading global provider of data center, colocation and interconnection solutions.  Under the terms of the agreement, Interxion shareholders will receive a fixed exchange ratio of 0.7067 Digital Realty shares per Interxion share.  The transaction values Interxion at approximately $93.48 per ordinary share or approximately $8.4 billion of total enterprise value, including assumed net debt.

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At the Submarine Networks World 2019 event, there was a new brand from Africa: Botswana Fiber Networks (BoFiNet). Never aware of BoFiNet’s involvement in any submarine cable project, I was quite curiously and had an interview with Mr. Keabetswe Segole, Commercial Executive at BoFiNet. Then I got to understand BoFiNet has invested in WACS and EASSY subsea cables and is the operator which connects Botswana to global submarine networks. BoFiNet has co-built with Paratus the fiber network from WACS cable landing station in Swakopmund, Namibia to Botswana. And BoFiNet is co-building with Broadband Infraco the terrestrial fiber cable connecting Botswana and Johannesburg, South Africa.

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Zayo Group announced on Wednesday that it has signed a definitive merger agreement to be acquired by affiliates of Digital Colony Partners (“Digital Colony”) and the EQT Infrastructure IV fund (“EQT” or “EQT Infrastructure”). The transaction would result in Zayo transitioning from a public company to a private company. Under the new ownership, the Zayo team would continue to execute the Company’s strategy and remain headquartered in Boulder, Colorado. The transaction valued at $14.3 billion, including the assumption of $5.9 billion of Zayo’s net debt obligations.

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IX Reach announced recently its partnership with Djibouti Data Center for its networkexpansion into East Africa. IX Reach is the leading provider of SDN cloud connectivity, remote peering and Ethernet services to more than 170 global locations. Djibouti Data Center is the first and only Tier 3 carrier neutral data center in east Africa with direct access to all major international and regional cable systems connecting Africa to Europe, Middle Eastern, and Asian markets.

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Colt Technology Services announced on Thursday the expansion of its portfolio in Asia, with the launch of Colt Private Wave in Japan, Hong Kong, and Singapore. Colt Private Wave is explicitly designed for businesses that require private optical solutions to ensure high security, high performance and resilient connectivity. It is designed to meet the most demanding customer needs, supporting multiple optical services or service types up to 100Gbps.

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Teraco Data Environments announced on Thursday that Berkshire Partners LLC has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire a majority stake in the company. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval and the customary closing conditions, and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2019. The Permira funds, an existing shareholder, will remain a significant investor. According to Bloomsberg, Berkshire Partners becomes the biggest shareholder in Teraco Data Environments. Teraco is the leading provider of carrier neutral colocation datacentres in Africa, hosting NAPAfrica and connecting with various subsea cables.

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China Telecom (Africa and Middle East) Limited (CTMEA), the Middle East and Africa subsidiaryof China Telecom Global (CTG), one of the world’s largest providers of integrated telecommunication services, has recently announced that it is establishing an inter-connection network and telecommunications hub to support growing traffic demands at Teraco data center in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg. Teraco is Africa’s first vendor neutral data centre.

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