Economy

Vodafone teams up with CityFibre to offer gigabit broadband

The deal will see CityFibre build a new new Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) network in towns and cities across the United Kingdom, with Vodafone having time-limited exclusive wholesale access in each location.

Vodafone Group PLC (VOD.LN) and CityFibre Infrastructure Holdings PLC (CITY.LN) have signed a long-term partnership to deliver high-speed full-fiber connectivity to up to five million homes and businesses in the U.K.by 2025, both companies said Thursday.

The new network would provide competition for the BT-owned Openreach which sells wholesale access to its copper and fibre-based network to most of the UK's ISPs. Once that is complete, they would seek to extend the terms to connect a further four million over the following four years. Vodafone recently agreed a similar deal in Germany to develop fibre broadband with Deutsche Glasfaser.

In the initial phase, costing £500mln, one million homes in twelve cities now supplied by CityFibre will be upgraded. Vodafone has committed to connecting 20 percent of homes passed over 10 years, and the guaranteed volume will help CityFibre accelerate its roll-out and reduce costs.

Vodafone said the partnership with CityFibre represented "one of the most significant developments in United Kingdom telecommunications since the launch of ADSL broadband around 17 years ago". The operator has already started a tender with network construction suppliers to ensure it meets the schedule and budget for the roll-out.



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