Swiss Open Fiber targets to reach 1.5 million of homes passed in the coming 5-7 years, for a total investment of up to CHF 3 billion, and will significantly support areas in Switzerland that are undersupplied with state-of-the-art broadband services as well as further promote digitalization also in non-urban areas. While Salt and Sunrise will act as anchor tenants, the infrastructure network will be offered to all retail operators to enable them to provide their customers with ultrafast broadband connectivity services. Sunrise and Salt have already initiated discussions with potential equity partners and financing banks and foresee to sign respective agreements in the coming months. The new infrastructure will bring substantial environmental benefits through energy efficient network sharing and transition to fiber. This project follows a proven concept that is being successfully implemented in several European countries, including Germany, France and Italy. Network roll-out operations are expected to be initiated in the 4th quarter of 2020.
André Krause, CEO of Sunrise, says “We are excited to embark on this Joint Venture which will accelerate ultrafast broadband connectivity and significantly improve fiber penetration in Switzerland relative to other European countries. This platform is open and transparent to the market and we are extremely happy to have secured Marc Furrer, the most distinguished expert in the domestic market, to chair Swiss Open Fiber.”
Pascal Grieder, CEO of Salt, explained “This project is unique of its kind, leveraging the capabilities and reach of two strong Swiss operators to create a nationwide infrastructure. Growing importance of flexible and virtual working and learning models will continue to drive the need for high-performance broadband services across Swiss households, and our initiative will facilitate such services at attractive prices. We have an ambitious roll-out plan and encourage municipalities and utilities looking into FTTH deployment to reach out to us. We are open for business.”
Marc Furrer, former president of the Federal Communications Commission ComCom, says “In 2008 we initiated the round-table, with which we achieved FTTH-deployment to around one third of the Swiss population. Now we want that the rest of Switzerland can benefit from high-quality FTTH-products, which are essential for home-office, home-schooling and home entertainment. The planned Joint Venture will bring this high-speed connectivity to most of the remaining market while ensuring infrastructure competition. The investments of up to CHF 3 billion will also give an impulse to the Swiss economy.”
The platform will be open for all players in the market. Swiss Open Fiber will collaborate with Swiss Fibre Net (“SFN”), who will support the set-up and operating activities in a strategic partnership. The accelerated FTTH roll-out will benefit all SFN partners and customers. Andreas Waber, CEO of SFN says “We are very pleased to be the strategic partner of the Swiss Open Fiber platform. Our already successful relationship with both operators will become even stronger and we look forward to promoting an open fiber infrastructure in Switzerland.“
Salt and Sunrise have engaged Lazard and Morgan Stanley as financial advisors, respectively.
Invitation to a Media Call: Today, Tuesday, May 19th, at 09.30 CET
For participation in the media talk:
- To see slides and hear speakers: Please use the following link for participation: Live Webcast
- The live webcast can also be followed via smartphone and tablets.
- Important: No questions can be asked (see below).
- To ask questions after the presentation, dial in by phone: +41 58 310 50 00
- Questions can only be asked by phone, not via live webcast.
Following the media call, André Krause, Pascal Grieder and Marc Furrer will be available for quotes and interviews. Please contact the media departments of Sunrise and Salt.
PS: The media conference will be held in German (the press release and the presentation are available in German, French, Italian, English).