Keppel signs deal with Converge on subsea cable system

A wholly owned subsidiary of Keppel Telecommunications & Transportation (Keppel T&T) will grant Philippine-listed Converge Information & Communications Technology Solutions capacity on the Bifrost Cable System.

Keppel Corp said yesterday that the unit has signed a deal with Converge to grant the fibre broadband provider the use of one fibre pair on the main trunk of the subsea cable system.

The cable directly connects Singapore to the west coast of North America via Indonesia through the Java Sea and Celebes Sea.

The two firms will develop a branch on the cable that will land in Davao in the Philippines.

Converge will invest around US$100 million (S$133 million) in the project, which is expected to "significantly increase" Internet speeds and network diversity for businesses and consumers in the Philippines, said Keppel Corp.

Converge chief executive Dennis Anthony Uy said the investment will allow the company to independently activate at will up to 15 terabits per second of capacity to either country.

"Furthermore, our ongoing construction of our national backbone spanning the whole country will allow Converge to distribute this capacity from Davao to any point in the Philippines," he said.

Keppel T&T chief executive Thomas Pang said: "Through this partnership, we will be able to accelerate the growth of our connectivity platform... as well as explore synergies with not only Keppel's data centres, but also Converge's data centre business."

The Bifrost Cable System, which Keppel T&T is undertaking with partners Facebook and Telin, will span more than 15,000km after its estimated completion in 2024.

It is expected to be the largest capacity high-speed transmission cable across the Pacific and will bolster Singapore's role as a regional digital hub, said Keppel Corp.

THE BUSINESS TIMES

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 22, 2021, with the headline 'Keppel signs deal with Converge on subsea cable system'. Subscribe