Orange Belgium and Telenet have signed two 15-year commercial wholesale agreements providing access to their respective Hybrid Fiber Coaxial and Fiber to the Home networks in both network areas. Since 2016, Orange Belgium has provided fixed internet and TV services on Telenet's HFC network through the regulated open-access model. Now, this agreement will further strengthen it for 15 more years. Orange Belgium and Telenet believes the agreement will benefit the customer, bring investments and thrive competition in Belgium's telecom market.
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Orange Belgium Access to Telenet's HFC
Firstly, Orange Belgium secures access to Telenet's Hybrid Fiber Coaxial (HFC) network and its future Fiber to the Home (FTTH) network for 15 years. Telenet's HFC network crossed 3.4 million homes in the Flanders and Brussels regions at the end of September 2022.
Orange Belgium, combined with its start of the art mobile network and the modernization of the VOO network in regions of Wallonia and Brussels - Capital, will democratize the multi-gigabit fixed and mobile speed experience all over the country.
Telenet Access to VOO Cable Network
Secondly, through the Agreement, Telenet will be able to access the VOO cable network in Wallonia for the first time and the remaining one-third of Brussels, covering around 1.8 million homes and which is in the process of being acquired by Orange Belgium. The agreement will also secure Telenet as a wholesale customer, increasing network penetration and return on modernization investments.
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Xavier Pichon, CEO of Orange Belgium, said: "It is a major step forward in the deployment of our leading nationwide multi-gigabit strategy. With the acquisition of VOO, we have an ambitious investment plan to upgrade the network and to provide multi-gigabit connectivity to our customers. The agreement on the Telenet network, will complement our ability to provide a Hybrid Fiber Coaxial and Fiber to the Home multi-gigabit connectivity value proposition to our customers wherever they live. We also welcome Telenet as a wholesale customer on our future VOO network. These agreements will foster competition and network investments nationwide".
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John Porter, Telenet CEO, said: "I'm pleased with the 15-year partnership we reached with Orange Belgium, building on a fruitful relationship developed over a number of years. Through the Agreements, we now have a clear path to wholesale access in the South of Belgium, complementing our existing fixed footprint in Flanders, parts of Brussels and the boot of Hainaut in Wallonia in addition to our nationwide mobile network coverage. This will enable us to grow into a nationwide FMC player and provide more choice for customers."
"Our commercial and go-to-market strategy is far advanced and we have ambitious plans for the South, targeting an off-footprint fixed market share of around 10% over the medium term, which will enhance Telenet's growth profile. I'm equally excited about the extended partnership with Orange Belgium in our footprint, which covers both our current HFC and future FTTH network. We welcome Orange Belgium as a wholesale customer on our future FTTH network, further increasing our network penetration and improving the return on investment and long-term profitability of our recently announced fiber investments," John added.
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The agreement is subject to the completion of the transaction for the acquisition of 75% minus one share of VOO by Orange Belgium, which requires EC regulatory approval.