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Toob, a Portsmouth-based full-fibre broadband startup, has been awarded a £75m round of funding to begin a service roll-out targeting 100,000 homes and businesses by 2021, and a million by 2029.
The firm will also be making the most out of new duct and pole access (DPA) arrangements soon to be put in place by Openreach to deploy services quicker.
The funding is to be drawn from investment group Amber Infrastructure’s National Digital Infrastructure Fund (NDIF), which is being run on a commercial basis by Amber Infrastructure Group, and is backed in part by £400m of public money through the government’s Digital Infrastructure Investment Fund (DIIF) initiative.
The NDIF was specifically put in place to ignite full-fibre roll-outs, and tempt more commercial investors to back ultrafast broadband services.
The firm, which is run by two former Vodafone directors, has also announced the appointment of former Gigaclear chairman Charles McGregor to help spearhead its expansion plans
“Toob now has the right people, the right plan and the right funding in place to capitalise on the exciting opportunity ahead of us,” said CEO Nick Parbutt. “We want to enable families, businesses and communities to live, work and play in ways which are only made possible with the advent of gigabit broadband.”
“This investment shows how the National Digital Infrastructure Fund continues to help companies improve broadband speeds across cities and towns in the UK, by increasing their access to private finance,” said Matthew Vickerstaff, interim CEO of the Infrastructure and Projects Authority.
“Upgrading our digital infrastructure to be reliable, sustainable and resilient is key to meeting the needs of an increasingly digital world, and increasing our productivity.”
Toob, which earlier this month was granted code powers by regulator Ofcom – that is to say, the ability to do essential construction work with less red tape – will announce the location of its first roll-out later in the year.
Read more about full-fibre broadband
- The latest expansion of Hyperoptic’s ultrafast network targets 20,000 properties in London and the south east.
- A £75m investment will see thousands of residential properties hooked up to full-fibre broadband services in Bournemouth and Northampton.
- Every residential and business property in Salisbury will be able to access full-fibre broadband in 12 months, claims Openreach.