UK altnet CityFibre has acquired TalkTalk’s fibre to the home (FTTH) network subsidiary, FibreNation, for a reported £2 billion ($2.6 billion).
In doing so, CityFibre has increased its FTTH target to from 5 million to 8 million UK connections by the mid-2020s.
CityFibre has been one of the most disruptive forces in the UK’s full fibre market and was instrumental in campaigning for the country to leave behind its legacy copper based networks.
In the past 2 years, FTTH penetration in the UK has risen from less than 1 per cent of the population to just under 10 per cent.
Phase one of CityFibre’s Gigabit rollout with Vodafone will provide 1 million FTTH connections across the country by the end of 2020. The deal to acquire FibreNation will allow CityFibre to significantly ramp up its long term targets.
“Digital connectivity has the power to transform our country into a nation of smart, connected towns and cities, boosting and levelling up our economy,” said Greg Mesch, chief executive at CityFibre.
“Today’s announcement establishes CityFibre as the UK’s third national digital infrastructure platform allowing millions more consumers and businesses to benefit from access to faster, more reliable services.
“The UK is a service-based economy, and this runs best on full fibre. Ensuring national coverage is critical and this can only be achieved by driving infrastructure competition at scale. This deal demonstrates the appetite from industry to see it established.”
TalkTalk also heralded the deal as good news for connectivity in the UK and for the company itself.
“This agreement is good news for TalkTalk and good news for Britain’s fibre roll-out. Our investment over the last five years and the excellent work delivered by the FibreNation team, combined with CityFibre’s well-established platform, will support wide-geographical reach of full fibre and further drive competition and customer take-up in the market,” Tristia Harrison, chief executive of TalkTalk.