Executive Council agreed in April this year that in order to maximise the benefit of the Subsea Cable for the people of St Helena, it will be in the Island’s best interest to build and own a new Fibre Network to deliver broadband to local homes and businesses.


St Helena Government (SHG) issued a Request for Proposals for Full Fibre Design, Build & Transfer (Ref TISD-1619-SHG) on 13 April 2022 (the “DBT Tender”). This was a restricted tender, with all interested parties invited to tender.


The DBT Tender included two lots:


Lot 1 – Design, build & transfer (to SHG) of a passive fibre optic broadband network for St Helena

Lot 2 – Design, build & transfer (to SHG) of the active network to light the fibre and bring it to a point whereby wholesale type services for data are provided.


The Tender closed on 10 June 2022 and three bids were received. The bids were of a high standard and were reviewed and moderated by SHG’s Evaluation Team which included their independent telecommunication consultants. As a result of this review, the Evaluation Team identified Maestro Technologies Ltd as having the highest overall score in line with the agreed evaluation criteria.


On Tuesday, 6 September, Executive Council advised that the Procurement Board should adopt the recommendation of the SHG Evaluation Team to appoint Maestro Technologies Ltd as the preferred bidder.

Next Steps


Personnel from Maestro Technologies Ltd will arrive on 10 September to undertake a physical exposure visit to improve their understanding of the Island and its challenges. During this time they will be working to finalise the details included within their tender by carrying out further survey works, talking to local contractors and other key stakeholders.


SHG will now commence negotiations with Maestro Technologies Ltd with a view to concluding a contract for Lots 1 and 2. Once this is concluded a Lot 3 Tender will be published to mount a full service set to the Island’s citizens and businesses and operate a complete the full fibre network, offering as a minimum broadband, telephony, TV and mobile services. This is anticipated to be published prior to 31 December 2022 or as soon as possible after contracts are signed.


The anticipated timeframe for the Design, Build and Transfer of the Fibre Network will take a year to complete and is anticipated to be ready by the end of 2023. In the meantime, work to complete the Cable Landing Station and the subsequent lighting of the subsea cable is continuing in line with the project timeframes.


Extension of the current Telecommunications Licence


The current Telecommunications Licence with Sure South Atlantic Limited (Sure) expires on 31 December 2022. In April 2022 Executive Council agreed to pursue a one-year extension to the current Public Telecommunications and broadcasting licenses with Sure. This will ensure the continued provision of telecommunications and television broadcasting services for the Island during the period the new network is being constructed.


Following discussion, Sure has subsequently agreed to an extension of both licences and these have now been formally endorsed by Executive Council and signed into effect by HE Governor Nigel Phillips CBE. SHG would like to thank Sure for agreeing to this extension.


Maestro Technologies (Maestro) is a UK-based group of companies specialised in managing and investing in telecoms and IT projects. Maestro has experience in deploying fibre networks for the past fifteen years and has delivered fibre to the premises to more than 150,000 homes in UK including building a wider network at a high rate utilising new build, BT Ducts and Poles. Maestro, directly and through its subsidiaries is also deploying fibre and providing business services on Tenerife and Menorca, and in Spain and the United Kingdom.


Maestro operates, through its subsidiaries, as an ISP delivering services directly to customers. Also, the Company has a software company that develops GIS, network operating systems and customer facing systems, (billing and support) and its portfolio also includes a mobile telephone service.


Maestro provides the same service as St Helena requires on the Spanish Island of Menorca and there is the second largest operator there with more 5,000 homes subscribed.


#StHelena #FibreOpticCable #Telecommunications


9 September 2022