Afrihost agrees to buy majority stake in Cool Ideas

Source: Telecom Paper

South African ISP Afrihost has agreed to acquire a majority stake in Cool Ideas, MyBroadband reported, subject to the necessary regulatory approvals. Afrihost and Cool Ideas are working to finalise the transaction as soon as possible. The parties hope to leverage the economies of scale of a larger network.

Cool Ideas will continue to operate as a stand-alone brand and business with the same management team and employees. All its original shareholders, including founders Andre Jooste and Paul Butschi, will retain stakes in the company. The other Cool Ideas shareholders are Roelf Diedericks and Shane Rees-Gibbs. Finances related to the deal have not been disclosed.

The majority stake in Cool Ideas will make Afrihost a significantly bigger player in the South African fibre ISP market. Afrihost already owns a majority stake in Axxess, one of the country’s premier service providers. This acquisition will create a powerhouse with three of South Africa’s top ISPs under the same umbrella. Cool Ideas was founded by Jooste and Butschi in 2011 when they explored prospects for starting a hosting business.

They also considered business offerings on the DFA network, but when Vumatel started deploying an FTTH network in Johannesburg, they saw a big opportunity. Cool Ideas partnered with Vumatel to offer fibre services in areas where it had coverage. The ISP showed rapid growth and started to offer fibre-to-the-home products on other fibre networks, including Openserve, Frogfoot and Octotel.


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