International ICT players, AARNet, Indosat Ooredoo, Singtel, SubPartners, in addition with Google and Telstra, have joined forces in the construction of a new international subsea cable system. The companies inked the agreement with Alcatel Submarine Networks (ASN).
The partnership builds from existing relations Singtel, Telstra, and SubPartners currently have in place.
The new agreement enables the businesses to provide additional connectivity between Australia and South East Asia, with the build of a new international subsea cable system that will connect Singapore, Indonesia and Australia.
Once completed, the cable system, previously known as APX West & Central and now named INDIGO, is aimed at strengthening links between Australia and fast-growing South East Asian (SEA) markets.
The INDIGO cable system is said to span about 9000km and connect Singapore and Perth, and onwards to Sydney. Within the system, there will be two additional fibre pairs connecting Singapore and Jakarta via a branching unit. The new cable will land in existing facilities in Singapore, Australia, and Indonesia.
The two-fibre pair ‘open cable’ design will consist of spectrum sharing technology. Each of the two-fibre pairs used will have a minimum capacity of 18 terabits per second, with the option to increase this capacity in the future.
SubPartners CEO, Bevan Slattery, said the delivery of “secure, reliable and high-speed connectivity” between Singapore and Sydney has been the core focus of SubPartners since its inception.
"We are delighted to be a part of the INDIGO cable system to finally realise this significant infrastructure project, and provide Australia with a new diverse international route into South East Asia," he mentioned.
Back in 2013, Slattery, who was also the NEXTDC founder and non-executive director, announced his intention to retire from the board and focus on his other businesses.
“It has been a terrific journey and I am very excited about NEXTDC’s future. However, my other interests in various other businesses including SubPartners, Megaport and Asia Pacific Data Centre Group (APDC) take up an increasing part of my time,” Slattery said back then.
Since the signing of the new agreement, Superloop Limited (ASX: SLC) has acquired all the issued shares of SubPartners.
Telstra group managing director of global services and international, David Burns, said with internet data consumption growing by 70 per cent in Asia last year alone, these sorts of investments in international networks are “critical” for meeting the needs of connected consumers and businesses.
“This will be an important piece of technology infrastructure connecting South East Asia and Australia, and follows a number of recent network enhancements Telstra has undertaken to meet growing demand for data and better connectivity from our customers across the Asia-Pacific region,” he said.
Singtel group enterprise vice-president of carrier services, Ooi Seng Keat, added that the construction of INDIGO is timely to meet the rising demand for high-speed broadband between Asia and Australia.
“This cable system complements our global connectivity that links Asia, the US, Europe, Australia and the Middle East. INDIGO will be a new data superhighway that facilitates Singtel, and our subsidiary Optus, to catalyse the development of digital economies across the regions,” Keat said.
ASN will construct the cable, which is expected to be completed by mid-2019.