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Neos Networks completes latest leg in infrastructure expansion

UK business connectivity provider hits target of 550 unbundled BT exchanges and confirms plans to continue expansion and boost local access networks

Neos Networks has revealed that it has now unbundled 550 comms exchanges belonging to UK incumbent operator BT. The move brings up to 100Gbps high-capacity fibre connectivity within reach of almost 750,000 business postcodes across the mainland UK.

Neos Networks was formerly SSE Enterprise Telecoms, a division of the national energy provider. It has been engaged to build a nationwide, high-capacity fibre network, and has focused solely on serving businesses, public sector organisations and critical national infrastructure providers with essential, reliable connectivity for more than 20 years.

In April 2021, Neos launched Ethernet over FTTx (EoFTTx), aiming to “revolutionise” the Ethernet services market with its first offering under its new corporate identity. The service is targeted at organisations with smaller sites that are unsuitable for services above 1Gbps, but are too mature for standard broadband connectivity and can make good use of a cost-effective, sub-1Gbps Ethernet hybrid system that has been purpose-built to support growing demand for a full suite of Ethernet services.

The latest announcement by Neos marks the completion of a major stage of the company’s Project Edge full-fibre network expansion, hitting its target a month before the original schedule of the end of 2021.The announcement also sees the firm reach a full-fibre footprint of more than 34,000km before the end of the year, which will help to underpin the UK government’s target for full-fibre, gigabit connectivity to 85% of UK premises by 2025.

The Project Edge network expansion programme is also designed to help facilitate the roll-out of a new wave of advanced 5G services for Three UK’s mobile network.

In the past year, Neos has unbundled more than 300 BT exchanges in order to hit its target, despite what it described as the “complexities and challenges” presented by the Covid-19 pandemic and periods of national lockdown. The company claimed its UK network is “well known” for the quality and reliability of its services, designed to improve and enhance connectivity for its business customers – including wholesalers, network operators, altnets and ISPs, as well as various public sector organisations and enterprises.

Colin Sempill, CEO of Neos Networks, said: “We’ve hit our 2021 target slightly ahead of schedule and that represents a great leap forward for our company and our vision to be the premier supplier of B2B-focused infrastructure in the UK. But it cannot stop there, and Project Edge will continue to reach out to help UK businesses access full-fibre, high-speed, high-capacity connectivity on their doorsteps.

“During 2022, I would expect the number of unbundled BT exchanges to continue to climb towards 700, and we will also look to target last-mile fibre connectivity in key regional business hubs.”

Neos provides its services to businesses directly or through its network of resellers and partners. The company’s wholesale offering provides fibre, Ethernet, optical and internet services, with a promise of quicker delivery, greatly improved speeds and significantly higher capacity guarantees compared with existing suppliers.

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