£100m from bank consortium to let Hyperoptic pull more full fibre

Hyperoptic has ambitious plans and is announcing its ambition to roll-out its full fibre service to some two million homes by 2022 and increasing this to five million by 2025. Some ?100m of investment from four European banks (BNP Paribas, ING, RBS and Dutch investment bank NIBC) will help a lot in the six fold expansion that will take the current 350,000 premise footprint to the two million mark.

We are proud to have created a network of gigabit cities where residents can live and work without connectivity constraints. Through private funding and partnerships with developers, freeholders, and councils we have hugely increased our footprint – but it’s our customers that have been the biggest catalyst in fuelling our growth.

We have a 4* Trustpilot rating; the highest in the industry. Our customers have really supported us by sharing their experiences with their neighbours, family and friends, which has meant that we have been able to expedite our rollouts across urban centres. This new round of funding enables us to offer even more people a credible broadband alternative that is future-proofed for decades to come.

Dana Tobak, CEO of Hyperoptic

The expansion also means that they will be considering sites with 25 units (apartments/businesses) dependant on the level of demand and ease of access to a fibre network for backhaul. There are hints that if the conditions are right that smaller units may be considered.

Full-fibre is the gold standard of broadband connectivity – and through companies like Hyperoptic, our commitment to world-class digital infrastructure for everyone in the UK is already becoming a reality. We’re investing over ?1 billion in next generation digital communications, including our recently launched ?400 million Digital Infrastructure Investment fund, and a five year business rates relief on new full-fibre investment – all of which will stimulate the market, and expand full-fibre networks around the country.

Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Andrew Jones

Clearly the Treasury is excited, and while this investment is not part of the ?1 billion talked about, the five year business rates holiday may play some part, the unknown is whether that holiday will be extended, or whether another Government could change things and bring it back early. With ?75m of previous investment getting the provider to where they are today and another ?21m from the European Investment back, it looks believe more investment will be needed to reach the two million premises mark, but the extra ?100m should help to keep the momentum up and depending on the rate of the roll-out they could overtake Openreach as the largest FTTP operator in the UK. The talk of ‘Gigabit Cities’ is a smidgen over the top from Dana Tobak, but given the level of PR from other operators around the globe it may well reflect what other operators are saying abroad.

It is possible once the full fibre roll-outs from CityFibre, Openreach, Virgin Media, Venus and others deliver on their ambitions we may be looking at significant chunks of cities (dreams of over 50%) with ready access to full fibre in a few years, but a 100% full fibre city (using the FTTH Council EU definition of premises passed definition).

The big unknown factor is how much all the roll-outs will overlap the existing DOCSIS 3.0 Virgin Media footprint, which once DOCSIS 3.1 is rolled out widely has the potential to offer Gigabit speeds, Hyperoptic with their focus on apartments is not likely to overlap much.


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