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Trooli Get GBP67.5m Funding Boost for UK Full Fibre Rollout

Friday, August 20th, 2021 (12:26 pm) - Score 1,632
Trooli-engineer

Broadband ISP Trooli, which is currently deploying a new gigabit-capable Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) network across parts of Kent, Hampshire, Suffolk, Surrey, Berkshire, Wiltshire and Sussex, has secured a £67.5m senior debt facility via a consortium of commercial lenders to help them reach 1 million UK premises by 2024.

At present the alternative network (AltNet) provider has already built their network to cover 100,000 premises (homes and businesses) and they’ve previously set a goal to reach 170,000 premises by the end of 2021, which will be followed by 400,000 premises in December 2022 (across c.300 towns and villages) and then 1 million premises by the end of 2024.

NOTE: Trooli currently employs 170 staff, but today’s deal will create a further 200 jobs.

Until now their initial build was being supported by funding worth €30m from the Connecting Europe Broadband Fund (here) and, more recently, £5m via a senior facility agreement with NatWest Bank (here). But that is not enough to achieve their longer-term aims, which is where today’s announcement will come in handy.

The new deal sees Trooli secure a £67.5m senior debt facility via a consortium of commercial lenders, facilitated by the Connecting Europe Broadband Fund (CEBF) – with “attractive terms” and the “potential for a further increase depending on business needs.”

We think that this funding, given their semi-rural build focus, is probably enough to get them over the 200,000 premises mark, but they’ll still need a lot more to reach the million mark.

Ashley Atkins, CFO of Trooli, said:

“We are committed to growing our network and meeting the need for really fast, reliable internet connections, especially in underserved rural areas.

Securing this level of funding not only underpins our ambitious growth plans but is also a vote of confidence in Trooli as a business and the product we offer.

Demand for our full fibre broadband has been extremely strong over the past year and we expect that to continue into the future.

Despite us running a small, targeted process, the offer has been many times oversubscribed. This fresh investment clearly demonstrates the banking community shares our vision.”

The provider’s broadband packages typically cost from £50 inc. VAT per month for an unlimited 300Mbps (100Mbps upload) service (currently discounted to £35) with free standard installation, and this rises to £80 for 900Mbps+ (300Mbps upload). The gigabit package may be more expensive than some rival gigabit plans, but this largely reflects the higher build costs of tackling rural / semi-rural towns and villages.

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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 Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
6 Responses
  1. David H says:

    They’re also rolling out in Bagshot (Surrey), and have been running fibre through existing ducts around our estate over the last few weeks.

  2. Gavin says:

    I wish they would come to the Oldham area. So far we’re in no plans for FTTP.

    Trooli needs to pick areas were there is no competition. Because if they get matched against OR or CF their prices will put them as a 2nd choice.

    I don’t understand why they, as a Fibre only, company is charging so much, especially when CF’s selling point was they can make Fibre for less than OR because they don’t have the copper overheads like OR do. Surely it would be the same for Trooli? Yet they have priced themselves at the high end.

  3. David says:

    Good reporting Mark. There’s far too many companies claiming large rollouts without the funding to match and also missing announced timescales.

    There’s so much competition now I can’t see many of these Altnet providers getting enough funding to meet their ambitions.

    1. Mark says:

      I wouldn’t necessarily agree.

      There seem to be no shortage of VCs and other bodies willing to invest safe in the knowledge that an industry consolidation will occur and that’s when they get their returns. As a utility that most households will end up paying for, it seems to be a low risk venture for the investors.

    2. David says:

      Agree on consolidation but I think there’s too much overbuild starting to happen make them all viable aquisition targets.

      Fast forward 10 years and I think we will see quite a few going bust having failed to be aquired or having enough subscribers to be viable.

      Great in the short term though for consumers as they all compete to gain market share.

  4. Winston Smith says:

    The UK has four mobile network carriers, so it’s not unresonable to assume it could support three national FTTP networks.

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