BrandArena: Google’s Equiano submarine cable, named after Nigerian-born abolitionist lands in Lagos

Friday 22 April 2022

Google’s Equiano submarine cable, named after Nigerian-born abolitionist lands in Lagos

Google’s Equiano submarine cable landed in Lagos, about a month after it launched in Lome, Togo. This is the second landing in Africa after which it will proceed to Swakopmund, Namibia; and Melkbosstrand, South Africa.

A digital launch and reception ceremony was held to mark the event and several dignitaries graced the occasion including the Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu; the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy Professor Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami), the Honourable Minister for Trade, Industry and Investment Otunba Niyi Adebayo and Juliet Ehimuan, Director, West Africa at Google.

We're thrilled to announce our Equiano submarine cable's second landing in Lagos, Nigeria. The cable has specific resonance for Nigeria, as named It's Olaudah Equiano, Nigerian-born writer and abolitionist. It's a homecoming! ➡️
— Google in Africa (@googleafrica) April 21, 2022

Speaking at the event, Juliet said that “the cable leverages state-of-the-art technology to provide approximately “20 times more Network Capacity” than the last cable built to serve the region.

A recent economic impact assessment conducted by Africa Practice and Genesis Analytics states that Equiano’s arrival in Nigeria is expected to result in faster internet speeds and significantly improve people’s experiences while online. Internet speeds in Nigeria are expected to grow almost sixfold by 2025, and retail internet prices are forecasted to decline by 21% over the same period. The same study found that by 2025, real GDP in Nigeria is forecast to be USD 10.1 billion higher than it otherwise would have been without Equiano and that the cable would indirectly generate roughly 1.6 million new jobs between 2022 and 2025.

Though spearheaded by Google, the cable’s landing has been a collective endeavour. Google and its partners West Indian Ocean Cable Company (WIOCC) have worked closely with many individuals and organisations to make this a reality.

Equiano cable system is the third private international cable owned by Google and the 14th subsea cable invested by Google.

Named for Olaudah Equiano, a Nigerian-born writer and abolitionist who was enslaved as a boy, the Equiano cable is state-of-the-art infrastructure based on space-division multiplexing (SDM) technology, with 12 fibre pairs and a design capacity of 150Tbps, approximately 20 times more network capacity than the last cable built to serve this region. The SDM technology was first deployed in Google’s second private subsea cable, Dunant.

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