Abu Dhabi’s Yahsat partners with Bluetown to provide connectivity to Africa

By Arun Shankar   3 January, 2018
Abu Dhabi’s Yahsat partners with Bluetown to provide connectivity to Africa

Yahsat, the UAE-based satellite operator, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Danish technology and Internet Service Provider company Bluetown.

Yahsat, the UAE-based satellite operator, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Danish technology and Internet Service Provider company Bluetown. The partnership agreement aims to connect the unconnected by providing high performance Ka-band satellite Internet services combined with Bluetown’s unique last mile solutions in unserved or underserved locations.

Both companies will join forces to offer an innovative, reliable and sustainable solution that will overcome the challenging and harsh terrain conditions present in the most remote areas of Africa. The combination of the partners’ technologies will support the distribution of Yahsat Internet satellite services to a substantial number of users within communities utilising Bluetown’s last mile solution.

Bluetown solutions vary from single village installations and refugee camps to solutions with up to 200 Wi-Fi hotspots in a 15km radius. All solutions are 100% powered by solar energy with rechargeable batteries as a back-up, which provides 24×7 access to the Internet.

The Wi-Fi hotspots will be backhauled by YahClick, the high-performance satellite broadband service provided by Yahsat, making it possible for people to browse the Internet, keep in touch, or participate in e-learning, e-health and e-government programs using any smartphone, tablet, or laptop.

Commenting on the partnership, Farhad Khan, Yahsat’s Chief Commercial Officer said: “We look forward to working hand-in-hand with Bluetown to bring universal access to information through a combination of satellite connectivity and Wi-Fi services. By joining forces, we will be able to offer a sustainable Internet solution for unserved or underserved communities, which is cost effective, easy to use and reliable.”

In addition to its core solution, Bluetown has developed a local cloud intranet platform to provide fast and easy access to e-learning, e-health and e-government services among others.

According to Henrik Mølgaard, Vice President of Global Sales at Bluetown: “We and Yahsat share the same vision to spread connectivity to even more communities, where information is not easily accessible. Today, governments are showing great interest in developing rural areas because it benefits everyone, and can help deliver better healthcare and education to small, remote villages. We are delighted to partner with Yahsat, combining their expertise and experience with our innovative solutions, to connect even more rural areas in Africa together.”

The announcement falls in line with the upcoming launch of Yahsat’s third satellite, Al Yah 3. “With the launch of Al Yah 3, we will be able to triple our presence in the African market, providing connectivity to 20 additional countries. Strategic partnerships such as the one with BLUETWON are essential to strengthen the economic inclusion of Africa’s rural communities. We are now one step closer to achieving our ultimate objective of empowering communities everywhere,” concluded Farhad Khan.

Yahsat is a satellite operator, headquartered in Abu Dhabi, UAE, and wholly owned by Mubadala Investment Company, the investment vehicle of the Government of Abu Dhabi. Yahsat is the first company in the Middle East and Africa to offer Ka-band services including YahClick, Yahsat Government Solutions, YahLink and Yahlive via its Al Yah 1 and Al Yah 2 satellites. With the launch of Al Yah 3, Yahsat’s commercial Ka-band coverage will be extended to an additional 20 markets, reaching 60% of Africa’s population and over 95% of Brazil’s population.

Bluetown is a global Internet and content service provider. Bluetown is headquartered in Denmark, and has local presence in India, Ghana, Tanzania, North- and Latin America.


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