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ISP Quickline Confirm GBP500m UK Ultrafast Broadband Rollout

Friday, Jun 11th, 2021 (1:16 pm) - Score 2,288
quickline fixed wireless broadband 2017

UK ISP Quickline, which specialises in deploying “full fibreFTTP and Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) networks around Lincolnshire and Yorkshire, has today confirmed their new plan to invest £500m on a deployment of “ultrafast and gigabit-capable broadband” connectivity across rural Northern England and beyond.

The announcement comes on the same day that Northleaf Capital Partners completed the purchase of a majority stake in the provider, which reflects the deal that was announced in late April 2021 (here). As a result of that, Quickline’s management team, as well as Bigblu Broadband and Harwood Capital, will retain minority stakes in the company.

The provider, which recently secured a string of four multi-million pound – state aid supported – rural broadband rollout contracts in the two counties (Building Digital UK), had already announced their long-term ambition to cover 500,000 premises. But until today it was unclear how much investment they’d put behind it and what the strategy would be.

Quickline said their rollout will involve an “innovative hybrid approach” by utilising both 5G wireless and fixed “full fibreFTTP networks for a “cost-effective, technical solution,” which is similar to what they’re planning for some of the aforementioned BDUK builds. However, it’s unclear whether they’re actually using the 5G NR standard, or simply FWA operating over similar bands and technologies.

NOTE: Quickline has recently also joined Cityfibre’s wholesale network to offer FTTP services via its new Quickfire division (here).

Sean Royce, Quickline’s CEO, said:

“This is a major turning point in Quickline’s history and sets us even further apart from other ultrafast broadband providers.

Receiving this kind of investment from Northleaf provides us with the ability to supply life-changing gigabit-capable broadband to hundreds of thousands of rural customers that previously were unable to access the internet at speed. We look forward to working alongside Northleaf to create this unique hybrid next-generation network, provide hundreds of jobs and build a business that provides new breakthroughs in internet connectivity for broadband users in remote pockets of the UK.”

Matt Warman, UK Digital Infrastructure Minister, said:

“I welcome this substantial investment in Quickline. It will help us build back better by connecting more than half a million rural homes and businesses to top-of-the-range broadband speeds by 2025.

Boosting connections in rural communities is crucial to our plans to level up Britain, and we’re working alongside commercial providers to plug in hard-to-reach homes and businesses through our £5 billion Project Gigabit scheme.”

At present there’s no shortage of alternative broadband networks (altnets) operating in the same space and Openreach’s recent move to boost their rural FTTP build will no doubt be putting pressure on some of those start-ups. Suffice to say that Quickline will need to fight hard to make a dent, but they do at least appear to have the skills, experience and funding to stand a chance.

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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 X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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