eir passes 1.9 million premises with hi-speed fibre

Created June 3, 2019
News and Business

Irish telco eir has published its results for the third quarter FY19 and nine months to 31 March 2019. Fibre features large in the list of achievements, with 1.9 million premises now passed with high-speed fibre technology, and 337,000 total FTTH premises passed, (275,000 as part of eir’s rural rollout). eir notes that 81% of Irish premises are now passed with fibre technology, and that its 688,000 fibre broadband customer connections, represents 73% of the company’s total broadband base.

“eir is the biggest investor in telecoms infrastructure in Ireland, having invested €1.5 billion in the last five years, and have committed to a further €1 billion over the next five. We continued to accelerate work and planning for our capital investment programme during the quarter, and our FTTH rollout has now passed 337,000 homes and businesses with super-fast broadband, including 275,000 rural premises,” stated eir CEO Carolan Lennon (pictured). “We recently announced the latest step in our €500 million fibre network investment programme, agreeing a deal with KN Circet to build the Optical Distribution Network for the rollout of high-speed broadband to 1.4 million premises, including every town in Ireland with more than 1,000 premises, delivering a network capable of speeds up to 10 Gbits/s.”

“The Group broadband base totalled 941,000 customers as at 31 March 2019, growing by 2% or 22,000 year on year, driven by strong subscriber growth in the consumer division,” added Stephen Tighe, eir Chief Financial Officer. “Customers using fibre-based high-speed broadband services totalled 688,000 at the end of the quarter, representing an increase of 68,000 customers or 11% year on year. 73% of our broadband customers are now connected to the company’s fibre network, which represents a 36% penetration of fibre premises passed.”

In a separate development, the Irish government earlier announced the appointment of a preferred bidder to progress the country’s National Broadband Plan, an initiative claimed to represent the biggest investment in rural Ireland since electrification.

The bidder, National Broadband Ireland, will supply broadband to the one quarter of Irish people and premises which currently cannot access high-speed broadband through commercial services. The scheme is designed to guarantee a level playing field for 1.1 million people, 540,000 premises including 100,000 businesses and farms, and over 600 schools, where commercial operators will not commit to deliver high speed broadband.

The appointed bidder’s solution is to set up a wholesale open access company dedicated to the rollout of a predominantly FTTP network in the intervention areas. This will be capable of delivering a future-proofed high speed broadband network, initially providing services of 150 Mbits/s to the majority of homes and up to 1 Gbits/s to heavy data users and SMEs.

For more information, visit www.eir.ie

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This article was written
by John Williamson

John Williamson is a freelance telecommunications, IT and military communications journalist. He has also written for national and international media, and been a telecoms advisor to the World Bank.