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Author Topic: Virgin Media UK Not Planning to Speed Up Cable Network Expansion  (Read 483 times)


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The overall boss of cable broadband ISP Virgin Media (Liberty Global) has told investors that their £3bn Project Lightning network expansion, which at the current pace will struggle to complete the target of 4 million UK premises passed by the end of 2019, won’t be ramped up. Meanwhile they do plan to target more MDUs.

So far the operator’s deployment programme has successfully expanded their FTTP and Hybrid Fibre Coax (HFC) based EuroDOCSIS cable broadband and TV network to reach an additional 1.3 million UK premises since around 2016/15.

However, at the current pace, they’re only completing around 500K premises per year, which means that ideally they would need to go a fair bit faster in order to hit their 2019/20 completion target of 4 million extra premises (total coverage of 17 million or c.60% of the UK).

    Mike Fries, CEO of Liberty Global, said:

    “We kind of like this pace that we’re building at now. And it’s driven, most importantly, by just optimizing the capital cost and ensuring that the returns stay where we want them to be.

    We could build faster. I think [the team] could easily ramp up. But I think from where we sit today this is a steady pace, and one that ensures we’re driving the lowest cost per premise and attacking and penetrating the most attractive areas of the market. And that’s going to continue.

    I think the trend going forward is going to be lower cost per premise as we look at MDUs, as the legislation we referenced gives us an opportunity to penetrate those markets more aggressively.”
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