Friday, 17 August 2018

Open Fiber raises €3.5 billion for Italian FTTH network

By Chris Kelly, Total Telecom
Monday 06 August 18

The funding will be drawn from a pool of international banks and the European Investment Bank

Open Fiber has raised €3.5 billion to help finance its plans to build a new fibre to the home (FTTH) network in Italy. The finance was raised from a pool of commercial banks, as well as the European Investment Bank, and will be repayable over a term of seven years…

Open Fiber has raised 3.5 billion to help finance its plans to build a new fibre to the home (FTTH) network in Italy.

The finance was raised from a pool of commercial banks, as well as the European Investment Bank, and will be repayable over a term of seven years. The total cost of Open Firber's new FTTH network is estiated to be around 6.5 billion. The remaining 3 billion will be drawn from cash flows generated by Open Fibre shareholders.

“The financial markets have shown great interest in Open Fiber's Business Plan, the operation attracting the biggest Italian and foreign banks. It is a clear sign of confidence in the scheme, in the wholesale-only model and especially in Open Fiber's people who have done a fantastic job in recent months,” Elisabetta Ripa, chief executive officer of Open Fiber, remarked.

In a recent study, Italy ranked 43rd in the world for average broadband speeds, clocking an average download speed of just 15.1Mbps. The rollout of full fibre networks across Italy would transform connectivity in the country and kickstart Italy's fledgling digital economy.

Open Signal chairman Franco Bassanini said that the fact that his company was abl to draw finiance from a number of international firms showed that the market was fully behind Italy's transformation into a gigabit society.

“The presence in the pool of lenders of a number of leading foreign financial intermediaries is an implicit sign of confidence in this country, one which is significant at a time when the markets are so edgy. The operation is also a fresh demonstration of the growing focus of the markets on the validity of the business model adopted by Open Fiber and other innovative European companies who are best placed to make the long-term investments needed to create the next generation network infrastructure for the Gigabit Society,” he said.

 

Also in the news: 

Hyperoptic raises £250 million for UK FTTH rollout

Germany allocates €2.4 billion to boost rural connectivity 

Bell launches 1.5Gbps hyperfast services in Canada 

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