Italian broadband services provider Fastweb says it has signed a network sharing agreement with wholesale access network operator Open Fiber. The agreement initially will extend Fastweb’s addressable market for fiber to the home (FTTH) customers in 80 cities. Fastweb also will have access to FTTH infrastructure in “white areas” where potential customers are underserved. The agreement also provides a means for Open Fiber to buy access to Fastweb’s network for its wholesale operations.
"The agreement represents an important part of our strategy to offer our customers the best connectivity,” said Alberto Calcagno, CEO of Fastweb. “In addition to developing an important expansion of our proprietary ultra-broadband network, through the new 5G technology fixed wireless access [FWA], in areas not reached by our FTTC, FTTH, and FWA infrastructures, we will also be able to use the connectivity created by Open Fiber, always maintaining our focus on differentiation and the ability to offer each of our residential and business customers the solution best suited to their needs."
Open Fiber, jointly owned by state-run utility Enel and state lender Cassa Depositi e Prestiti, aims to create a nationwide wholesale FTTH network in Italy (see “Open Fiber chooses Nokia for rural FTTH network build in Italy”). It already has several customers in addition to Fastweb (see, for example, “Italtel and Open Fiber extend ultra-broadband network partnership for underserved areas of Italy”).
"The strategic agreement with Fastweb further expands the portfolio of Open Fiber commercial partnerships to confirm the validity of the wholesale-only model that offers access to all operators on equal terms,” added Elisabetta Ripa, CEO of Open Fiber. “The infrastructure entirely in fiber that we are building, is the only one available in more than 80 urban centers in the country and will soon be marketed on a large scale even in small municipalities, allowing us to offer high quality and future-proof broadband connections."
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