CityFibre unveils £2.5bn investment plan to expand full fibre network

29 October 2018

CEO Greg Mesch says CityFibre's rollout will catalyse "huge economic growth" in regional towns and cities.

Rollout will catalyse "huge economic growth" – CEO Greg Mesch.

CityFibre has announced a new £2.5bn full fibre investment plan.

It has identified 37 towns and cities where it already has critical fibre spine assets as primed for expansion for FTTH.

The firm says the rollout will deliver five million homes and corresponds to one third of the government’s 2025 target of 15 million homes.

It adds that the scale of the plan means it will be awarding city and town-wide construction contracts across the country for several years to come.

According to CityFibre, its whole-city build approach ensures that, once completed, nearly every home and business in its footprint will have access to full fibre connectivity.

The investment plan aims to deliver a large-scale open-access platform. It’s claimed this will provide choice for ISPs and mobile network operators, while complementing other national digital infrastructure developments that are currently underway.

With Vodafone as its first consumer ISP customer, CityFibre’s FTTH builds are currently underway in Milton Keynes, Peterborough and Aberdeen.

Construction is due to start in Edinburgh, Stirling, Coventry and Huddersfield before the end of this year, with Cambridge, Leeds and Southend-on-Sea shortly afterwards.

CEO Greg Mesch says: “With a headstart in 37 towns and cities, this full fibre investment plan enables us to further accelerate our rollout, catalysing huge economic growth in regional towns and cities across the country and transforming the UK’s digital future. 

“We now need to work together across Government, Ofcom and industry to create a level-playing field that continues to encourage investment from multiple network operators, so that full fibre can be delivered as quickly and effectively as possible.”

As well as the 10 cities and towns named above, the 27 others that are primed to received further investment in full fibre connectivity and local rollout teams include: Bath, Batley, Bournemouth, Bracknell, Bradford, Bristol,Crawley, Derby, Southend-on-Sea, Dewsbury, Stirling, Doncaster, Glasgow, Halifax, Harrogate, Leicester, Maidenhead, Manchester, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northampton, Nottingham, Reading, Rotherham, Sheffield, Slough,Southampton, Swindon, Wakefield and Worthing.

This latest development follows CityFibre’s acquisition in June 2018 by Antin Infrastructure Partners and West Street Infrastructure Partners (a fund managed by Goldman Sachs).