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Hmm.. Angie Pledges 10Gbps Fibre Optic Broadband to 3 Million UK Premises

Friday, April 24th, 2015 (3:26 pm) - Score 3,114

Who? A strange and unexpected press release just crossed our desk, which stems from a company in the Netherlands that we’ve not heard of before, Angie Communications. Essentially they plan to “aggressively” rollout a 10Gbps capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) network to 3 million premises and make “4.5G” and 5G mobile broadband available to 95% and 90% of the UK respectively by 2021.

The operator, which was formerly known as iUHBA Networks, promotes itself as being “a next-generation communications firm with a long and remarkable history” and claims that their proposed plan will “[leapfrog] the incumbent providers’ fragmented and outdated services” (we assume that is a veiled reference to BT).

Angie further claims to be “the largest new entrant in the communications market” and one that has financial commitments in place in excess of €300m (£215m), which apparently represents 10% of the company at a £2.15 billion valuation (this allegedly stems from direct investments). In addition, Angie is in the process of selling another £215m worth of equity, which is expected to close by September 2015. But we have struggled to verify any of this.

Otherwise the press release includes no quotes from the companies CEO, Neal Lachman (his LinkedIn profile makes for an interesting read), or any mentions of firm verifiable support from other businesses or political institutions in the United Kingdom. The operator also does not have Code Powers from Ofcom, without which it would be very difficult to proceed on a national scale, although there’s still time to get that resolved.

Never the less Angie centres itself around three key targets, which seem to mirror the commitments that they’ve also made for the Netherlands and.. strangely.. the USA. After a bit of digging we also managed to uncover a rough timescale for when each of these might be achieved.

Angie Communications – UK Goals (Total Lifetime Cost – £16.5 billion)

* Fourth generation (4.5G) Mobile Broadband network covering 95% of UK population by 2018
* Fifth generation (5G) Wireless Access network covering 90% of UK population by 2018
* 10 Gbps Fiber to the Premises (FTTP) infrastructure – 3 million connections throughout the United Kingdom by 2021

At this point our readers might well be forgiven for stuffing a mug full of salt into their mouths, at least until such time as we can find some solid credibility to back up the marketing spin. We’re also unsure what exactly they mean by “4.5G” and note that their FTTP deployment would focus on MTUs (residential) and MDUs (business).

In the meantime we view it as being incredibly unlikely that an otherwise unknown start-up, seemingly one without any major local network or business backers, could simply walk into the United Kingdom and do what has been promised above. Check out their project plan for more. We’re happy to be proven wrong of course, but right now it’s all just words.

On the “upside” their Facebook page features some videos of people driving sports cars in a parking lot. Hurray? We expect they’ll remove those quite quickly. Also, this. In other news, pies have been spotted in the sky, with pigs potentially flying nearby.

Leave a Comment
18 Responses
  1. Avatar Mark says:

    I really hope that this will happen, the UK needs something like this TBH. It just seems too good to be true though.

    1. Avatar Steve Jones says:

      Yes, just what’s needed. A nice fantasy.

  2. Avatar dave says:

    someone is pulling your leg.

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      I think we made our thoughts about its credibility pretty clear :).

  3. Avatar Tony says:

    Reading their document they’re predicting between 15 and 20 million mobile subscribers by 2018 – a quarter of the UK market.. in 3 years.

    This is the business equivalent of someone ranting about alien invasions..

  4. Avatar Astroturfer says:

    Looking at this press release you have to wonder if the writing of it involved a white powder that most definitely wasn’t salt.

    1. Avatar FibreFred says:

      A nice flashy presentation tho!

  5. Avatar sentup.custard says:

    Unfortunately, due to the slow nature of British broadband, this news from the Netherlands arrived twenty-three days late. 😉

  6. Avatar adslmax Real says:

    well well, I do hope so! This will going to hurt BT, Sky and Virgin Media.

  7. Avatar themanstan says:

    Check out NSLfunds, the investment vehicle for Angie… Ummm…

  8. Avatar Gavin says:

    Never trust what a company says when they are after investment. Do your own research and make up your own mined before handing any money over. As the article says it seems a bit ambition’s.

  9. Avatar Jonas says:

    More hype to raise funds , prop up a stock price, get some free PR. Sad thing is it usually works and then the networks never get built.

  10. Avatar qasdfdsaq says:

    What they mean by “4.5G” is probably the same thing that EE are currently selling as “4G Plus” or in other words, 3.99G, with an added 0.51G’s of inflated marketing.

    To be precise, it’ll be LTE-Advanced – which would only barely qualify as 4.0G – under certain theoretical configurations for which no hardware currently exists.

  11. Avatar Peter says:

    If a story sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Found some interesting background on Angie’s CEO. Apparently, he likes his stories really tall:

    http://www.bizjournals.com/kansascity/stories/2004/04/26/daily51.html?page=all

    http://arstechnica.com/business/2014/07/21/startup-claims-it-will-build-fiber-network-in-la-and-wireless-throughout-us/

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      We did receive a comment from the CEO on Twitter and had an “interesting” chat, but I’ll let other people decide if they think this is how the boss of a serious business should communicate. Note: the full chat log only shows for members of Twitter.

      https://twitter.com/hunt_jon/status/593040367542472704

  12. Avatar Peter says:

    I’ve also found this conversation on twitter where, in my opinion, it gets even worse:

    https://twitter.com/disruptivedean/status/594120298418442241

    Again, highly unprofessional behaviour, and I cannot shake off the impression that all Angie-related accounts are operated by the same person. Actually, all Angie-related companies (investment firms etc.) seem strangely similar. It’s all facade, if you ask me.

    Google his name, and be amazed at what you can find. Delusional self-conceit on an unprecedented level. I wouldn´t lend this guy a penny.

  13. Avatar Wkd says:

    Haha.. I’d consider myself a good judge of character. Unless that’s a spoof CEO Twitter account. This person is either a. very inexperienced and unrealistic or b. a fraud. Then again this is based off that feed alone and him not providing any details in reference to building approvals.

  14. Avatar Hamish Taylor says:

    Been watching Mr Lachman for a number of years and it is sadly interesting to see how his modus operandi does not really change… funny how all those promises of millions to be earned have never materialised. Now he is here in the UK, it is time we get the FSA to investigate… before some other suckers lose their money.

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