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TrueSpeed Get £75m Investment to Extend FTTP Broadband in the South West

Tuesday, July 11th, 2017 (12:01 am) - Score 3,791

Ultrafast “Full Fibre” ISP TrueSpeed Communications, which has been deploying a new 100Mbps+ Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband network to rural areas in North East Somerset (England), has managed to attract a huge investment of £75m from Aviva Investors to help expand their network.

So far TrueSpeed has already deployed into the village of Priston and they’re currently expanding their network into nearby Compton Dando, Stanton Drew and Stanton Wick (Chew Valley). The demand-led expansion is also targeting Woolard, Publow, Pensford, Chew Magna, Chew Stoke and Bishop Sutton, among others.

The provider has previously hinted that it would like to go even further and build across other parts of rural South West England, with counties such as Devon, Wiltshire, Herefordshire and Gloucestershire all being mentioned (here). However such a roll-out would require a significant increase in the company’s money supply and once again the lure of “full fibre” infrastructure appears to have attracted precisely what is needed.

Evan Wienburg, TrueSpeed CEO, told ISPreview.co.uk:

“This is brilliant news for the residents and businesses in our region. This significant investment will enable TrueSpeed to roll out the full fibre network infrastructure and services the region has needed and will provide our customers with a high quality broadband and data capabilities for the first time. This brand new infrastructure will be capable of handling the speed requirements of our customers now and in the future at a competitive price and with a regional service focus.

My whole team is very much looking forward to working with Aviva Investors and delivering some of the fastest and most reliable internet found anywhere in the world. Fast, Fair, Forever!”

Sean McLachlan, Aviva’s Senior Director of Infrastructure Equity, said:

“Aviva Investors is pleased to support the rollout of TrueSpeed’s ultrafast FTTP network. There is a clear and growing demand for this essential infrastructure across the country, in particular rural locations. The funding Aviva Investors is providing will allow TrueSpeed and its management team to accelerate its business plan and network expansion to provide world class infrastructure to users who are currently underserved.”

The investment from Aviva’s global asset management business should enable TrueSpeed to both accelerate their rate of deployment and to put their network within reach of up to 75,000 homes and businesses in the region (assuming they can benefit from the below changes), although one recent slide suggested they were aspiring to reach 103,000 premises passed (the timescales for all this are unknown).

Such a deployment will no doubt benefit from the Government’s proposed 100% business rates relief on new 5G Mobile and “full-fibre” (FTTH/P) broadband networks (estimated to be worth £60m) over a 5-year period (here). It’s also possible that they might be able to access additional investment through the new £400m Digital Infrastructure Investment Fund (here).

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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6 Responses
  1. Avatar JimWeir says:

    What is curious about this investment is that all indicators suggest Gigaclear will be awarded Lot1 by CDS, and a quick check on Gigaclear’s postcode checker for areas like Priston & Stanton Drew show intent to build there.

    Is there really demand for two FTTP networks in the same villages?? Great to have choice but someone will lose

    1. Avatar TheFacts says:

      Looks like Gigaclear are saying they have Lot1. Crazy to overbuild another FTTP provider, which ever way round.

  2. Avatar JimWeir says:

    75k properties for £75M doesn’t look right – even for overhead build it looks under costed.

    Are there 75k properties in B&NES reachable & underserved?

    1. Avatar David Roberts says:

      Jim, your negative comments are the reason why FTTp in the UK is behind most of Europe. Maybe you should be positive and congratulate Truespeec on having the vision to do something about it!

    2. Avatar Jim says:

      David, Its not negative it is realistic – Truespeed have been promising various communities for 2 years they would build FTTP and haven’t reached any of them…

      Its fantastic to see increased investment in Infrastructure in the South West, but when there are so many undeserved in the region I fail to see how 2 small companies overbuilding each other is a long term investment win for anyone.

      What do you think about Gigaclear building in Priston then? How does that help improve the FTTP coverage for the UK?

  3. Avatar Phil Theetime says:

    This is fantastic news. There is enough of the region underserved to make sure that Truespeed and Gigaclear won’t be in proper competition with each other.

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