Nov 9, 2017

Vodafone throws down gauntlet to BT with new fibre network

Vodafone has moved to shake up the broadband market in the UK after it signed an agreement with fibre specialist CityFibre to fund the construction of a full fibre network potentially reaching 5m homes by 2025. The move throws down the gauntlet to BT's Openreach division and Virgin Media by creating a third substantial network within the UK that will lay fibre direct to doors of consumers. The first cities to get the fibre network have not been revealed as Vodafone does not want to alert Openreach to speed up its strategy for those regions, according to a person briefed on the plans. Nick Jeffery, Vodafone UK chief executive, said: "The UK has fallen far behind the rest of the world, trapped by the limited choice available on legacy networks. We look forward to working with CityFibre to build the gigabit fibre network that the UK needs and deserves." The company has been linked with a merger with Virgin Media, which is pouring £3bn into new fibre in the UK, but the CityFibre deal is unlikely to overlap with the cable company's network.

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