With the approval of the basic financing terms by the banks of the plan for the development of a fiber optic network, PPC is taking another step towards the future of broadband. The company’s investment in telecommunications, totaling 680 million euros, with a horizon of 2026, aims to take advantage of the electricity network that spreads to every corner of the country, effectively displacing the obsolete copper network of telecommunications providers.
PPC’s goal is to play a leading role in the wholesale market of ultra-high speed telecommunications services, with the infrastructure it will develop in the low voltage air network. Following many international examples, PPC can connect homes and businesses to its fiber optic network, called Fiber To The Home (FTTH). It will therefore have the role of telecommunications infrastructure manager with potential customers providers (Cosmote, Vodafone, and Wind).
Marrying overhead power grids with fiber optics is easier and cheaper than the investments that need to be made underground to replace the current copper-based telecommunications network.
In order for the project to be tested and to address possible problems, during yesterday’s Board of Directors, the assignment and start of the pilot program in Peristeri was approved. The pilot network, according to information, will be developed by the company without cooperation with an existing player in the telecommunications market.
The optical fibers “battle” is on
However, the climate around the development of fiber optic home networks (FTTH) has begun to heat up. The telecommunications providers have already taken up battle positions largely guarding their acquis, with the investments they have already announced.
Today our country has a total of 4.8 million lines, while, according to the Minister of Digital Government, Kyriakos Pierrakakis, the deficit found in the fiber optic network to homes (FTTH) amounts to 2 million connections. Providers’ investments are already aiming to fill this gap.
Just last week, the OTE Group, which dominates the country’s telecommunications infrastructure, with the blessings of the parent company Deutsche Telekom, announced the expansion of its investment plan in order to accelerate the growth of FTTH by 2027. Increasing its investments to 3 billion euros in six years, will actually cover about 2/3 of the country, reaching the optical fiber in 3 million homes and businesses. By the end of 2022, it is expected to cover 1 million homes and businesses with FTTH, while from there on it will add about 300,000 – 500,000 lines per year, depending on the coverage areas and the speed of licensing by the municipalities.
The hitherto known investments of Vodafone and Wind, in combination with the implementation of the Ultra Fast Broadband (UFBB) project, which will cover at high speed 750,000 connections in the so-called white areas (which are not of great commercial interest), will cover another 1, 6 million lines “locking” the total needs of 4.6 million households and businesses. It is noted that the Rural Broadband project also concerns about 150,000 lines.
The strategy of Wind in the field of infrastructure is also expected with interest, which is in the phase of acquisition by United Group, parent company of NOVA, which was already in discussions with PPC for cooperation in the field of optical fibers.
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