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Openreach to slash wholesale fibre prices from September

Wholesale price cuts of almost 40% will help Openreach’s CSP customers grow their full-fibre customer bases, and generate a better return on their investment

National network builder Openreach is to cut wholesale prices across its range of ultrafast full-fibre – or fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) – broadband products, by 36% in the case of its headline 330Mbps product, in an attempt to help its communications services provider (CSP) customers upgrade their customers, attract new ones, and gain improved return on investment (ROI) on future-proof ultrafast broadband services.

Besides the 36% reduction on the Ultrafast 330Mbps product, down to £24.28, Openreach’s entry level Ultrafast 110Mbps product will drop 20% to £17.28, and its Superfast 40Mbps product will come down 10% to £14.28. The price cuts will take effect from 1 September 2019, and will be made available to all CSPs on the same basis, with no commitments to customer volume.

Openreach said it would also be introducing improved headline products before the end of its current financial year, targeting both consumers and home workers with 500Mbps and 1Gbps full-fibre products.

“We’re making great progress on our full fibre build programme and our discussions with customers about upgrading the country have been encouraging so far,” said Openreach’s MD of customer, commercial and propositions, Katie Milligan.

“Naturally pricing is fundamental to that shift and we want to give our wholesale customers the confidence to invest at scale in their own full fibre products and services using our network.”

“These price changes are a win/win for communications providers, their customers and Openreach. We believe they will encourage the UK’s homes and businesses to experience the benefits of faster and more reliable broadband.

“We hope they’ll incentivise our wholesale customers to consider the longer-term benefits of upgrading more of their customers to ultrafast FTTP technology, particularly their customers who are currently using superfast FTTC services,” she said.

Read more about full-fibre broadband

  • CityFibre extends its full-fibre broadband network to more homes and businesses in latest roll-out expansion.
  • Ofcom’s latest Communications Market Report examines key trends in the UK’s broadband and mobile market, and finds that access to ultrafast broadband is expanding rapidly.
  • A Buckinghamshire village is helping to fund an Openreach broadband network dig using vouchers pooled through the government’s Rural Gigabit Connectivity scheme.

Besides providing CSPs with longer-term pricing certainty on full-fibre, Openreach hinted that the price reductions might pave the way for future limited offers in exchange for CSP commitments.

Having recently ramped up the pace of its full-fibre build at the behest of its ultimate stakeholder, BT, Openreach has effectively doubled its full-fibre footprint in the past 12 months alone, and how claims to be passing 20,000 homes and businesses every week.

Currently, it expects to bring full-fibre to four million properties by March 2021, and 15 million by 2025, although it has maintained throughout that hitting this target is dependent on receiving appropriate support from CSP customers and the regulator, Ofcom – with which it still has some differences on matters such as dark fibre provision – as well as its ability to generate a fair ROI itself.

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