CityFibre is an independent British telecommunications network provider, providing gigabit-capable FTTP broadband across the UK. It is the third-largest network provider in the UK, after Openreach and Virgin Media.[4][5][6] It is considered one of the UK's "altnets" (alternative network provider), in reference to being an alternative to Openreach.[7][8]

CityFibre Holdings Limited
Company typePrivate
IndustryInternet & Communications
Founded11 January 2011; 13 years ago (2011-01-11)
HeadquartersLondon, England, UK
Key people
  • Greg Mesch (CEO)
  • Jonny Henry (Chief Safety Officer)
  • Simon Holden (COO)
  • Nick Dunn (CFO)
  • John Franklin (CTO)
ProductsFibre-based Internet Services
  • Decrease £31 million (2022)
  • Decrease -£210  million (2023)
Total assets
Number of employees
1,900 (2023)[3]

Overview edit

CityFibre is based in London, and is co-owned by Antin Infrastructure Partners, Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Mubadala Investment Company and Interogo Holding.[9][10][11] The company was listed on London's Alternative Investment Market from 2014 to 2018.[12]

The company has rapidly expanded across the UK, with a focus of expanding high-speed internet access in "second-cities", locations that were otherwise neglected by competitors. Prior to CityFibre's investment, for example, the average internet speed in Milton Keynes was 26.6Mbps, 17.4Mbps lower than the national average.[13][14]

Over 35 internet service providers use CityFibre for their network, including Andrews & Arnold, BrawBand, BrillBand, Facto, FibreHop, Gigabit Networks, Giganet, IDNet, Link Broadband, No One, Octaplus, RunFibre, TalkTalk, Toob, Vodafone, Yayzi, YouFibre, and Zen Internet.[15]

History edit

CityFibre was founded in 2011.[6][11] It became a publicly traded company in 2014.[16]

In November 2014, CityFibre entered into a partnership with EE and Three to provide backhaul connections to mobile data masts.[17]

In July 2017, CityFibre announced the acquisition of Entanet for £29 million.[18][19]

In 2018, CityFibre announced that Connect Infrastructure Bidco Limited (a newly formed company indirectly jointly-controlled by a consortium formed by Antin Infrastructure Partners and West Street Infrastructure Partners, a fund managed by Goldman Sachs) had purchased a majority share in the company at 81 pence per share (a 92% premium of the public price of market close at 42 pence per share) and public trading of the company was cancelled on 22nd June 2018 taking CityFibre into private ownership.[20][21]

At the beginning of February 2023, the CEO Greg Mesch announced a company restructuring, blaming the UK's "struggling economy" causing rising costs for their business. As part of the restructuring 400 jobs would be cut from their 2,300 staff.[3][22] At the time CityFibre reported they had 2.5 million properties connected to their network.

Fibre rollout edit

2015 edit

In 2015, CityFibre purchased assets from Kcom, tripling the size of its high speed fibre network.[23] The following year, CityFibre generated profit for the first time. At the time, its network covered "20% of the UK".[12]

2020 edit

From the early 2020s, CityFibre has been rapidly expanding its access across the UK, with plans to cover one-third of the country with gigabit internet by 2025.[24][9][7][4][6]

2022 edit

In 2022, the company completed successful trials of 2Gbps residential services in York, with further plans to increase speeds up-to 10Gbps using XGS-PON technology.[25][26]

In November 2022, CityFibre entered into partnership with the internet service provider Toob.[27] In December, CityFibre filed a Competition Act complaint to the Competition and Markets Authority and Ofcom alleging that its competitor, Openreach, had attempted to suppress opposition.[28]

2023 edit

In 2023, CityFibre was awarded £69m in funding from the British government's Project Gigabit initiative, to help in expanding gigabit internet access in rural properties across Cambridgeshire.[29] They also secured funding for expansions into Hampshire, Suffolk, and Norfolk.[30][31] In January, CityFibre reported that they were building at the rate of 22,000 premises per week, across 75 metropolitan areas, with a 83% increase in their network footprint in 2022.[4] In May, it was announced that TalkTalk would be using CityFibre networks for its business customers.[32] In June, ISP Yayzi became the first ISP on the CityFibre network to offer up-to 2.5Gpbs to consumers, thanks to the usage of XGS-PON technology. Vodafone had previously offered 2Gbps, however this was on a limited basis for trialing purposes.[33] This offering was expanded in July, when CityFibre announced it was making a 2.5Gbps broadband tier available to all of their retail ISPs.[34][35]

CityFibre also filed a complaint with Ofcom in May, on how different fibre broadband products were being advertised to customers as "full-fibre broadband".[36] This was successful with Ofcom ruling on 13 December that providers must use correct terminology for the type of fibre broadband they provide. Companies can not advertise products full-fibre unless it is FTTP.[37] This was done to combat the vast majority of fibre broadband providers selling FTTC (Fibre-to-the-cabinet) as "full-fibre" when the final connection to the property is a copper coax cable or ADSL.

2024 edit

In January 2024, CityFibre completed laying 100km of Fibre in and around Bury St Edmunds. Along with CityFibre's standard 1Gbit fibre, this build also included CityFibre's new 10 Gbit fibre service, the full build reportedly cost CityFibre £8 million to complete. Completion of Bury St Edmunds pushed CityFibre over 3.5 million properties on their network.[38]

In March Cityfibre publicly announced the company has acquired Lit Fibre for an Undisclosed amount. With the addition of Lit Fibre network expands CityFibre's network with 300,000 properties in 20 towns across the UK, including 10Gbps XGS-PON networking, adding these Lit Fibre connections the CityFibre's over 3.5 million properties already connected.[39][40]

References edit

  1. ^ a b c "CityFibre-2020-Annual-Report" (PDF). CityFibre. Archived (PDF) from the original on 27 January 2022. Retrieved 8 August 2022.
  2. ^ "About Us". CityFibre. Archived from the original on 2022-08-06. Retrieved 2022-08-06.
  3. ^ a b Jackson, Mark (2023-02-02). "CityFibre Restructures to Keep UK FTTP Plan on Track - Cuts 400 Jobs UPDATE". ISPreview UK. Retrieved 2024-01-06.
  4. ^ a b c "Summary of ISP Choices on CityFibre's UK FTTP Broadband Network". ISPreview. 14 April 2023. Archived from the original on 21 June 2023. Retrieved 2 July 2023.
  5. ^ "Grain expands fibre network as CityFibre hits gigabit roll-out accelerator". 6 June 2022. Archived from the original on 7 February 2023. Retrieved 2 July 2023.
  6. ^ a b c "Virgin Media O2 eyes up CityFibre takeover bid". 20 March 2023. Archived from the original on 29 May 2023. Retrieved 2 July 2023.
  7. ^ a b "UK altnets advance pace of full-fibre deployment". 20 March 2023. Archived from the original on 29 May 2023. Retrieved 2 July 2023.
  8. ^ "'Altnets' take on incumbents in fight for UK fibre broadband customers". Financial Times. 20 March 2022. pp. Financial Times. Archived from the original on 23 March 2023. Retrieved 2 July 2023.
  9. ^ a b "CityFibre | Cambridge Network". Archived from the original on 2021-10-22. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  10. ^ Fildes, Nic (2020-06-10). "CityFibre to create 11,000 jobs in full-fibre network push". Financial Times. Archived from the original on 2021-07-29. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  11. ^ a b "New owners of CityFibre will need deep pockets in competitive broadband sector". Sky News. 25 April 2018. Archived from the original on 24 March 2023. Retrieved 2 July 2023.
  12. ^ a b Megaw, Nicholas (2016-04-18). "CityFibre delivers first profit ahead of schedule". Financial Times. Archived from the original on 2019-09-25. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  13. ^ Smith, Alan; Fildes, Nic; Blood, David; Harlow, Max; Nevitt, Caroline; Rininsland, Ændrew (18 July 2018). "Broadband speed map reveals Britain's new digital divide". Financial Times. Archived from the original on 31 January 2023. Retrieved 2 July 2023.
  14. ^ Fildes, Nic (18 January 2018). "Broadband's 'forgotten city' rewired in ultrafast battle". Financial Times. Archived from the original on 12 November 2020. Retrieved 2 July 2023.
  15. ^ "CityFibre | Broadband providers". CityFibre. Retrieved 2024-04-15.
  16. ^ Ruthven, Hunter (2014-01-20). "AIM admission for CityFibre as company raises £16.5 million". Growth Business. Archived from the original on 2023-07-02. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  17. ^ "CityFibre connects to mobile masts in challenge to BT". Financial Times. 13 November 2014. Archived from the original on 21 January 2022. Retrieved 2 July 2023.
  18. ^ "CityFibre | Entanet and CityFibre unite to transform wholesale…". CityFibre. Retrieved 2024-01-07.
  19. ^ "Entanet Acquisition Creates Significant Wholesale Player in CityFibre". Comms Business. 2017-07-05. Retrieved 2024-01-07.
  20. ^ "CityFibre | CityFibre to delist from AIM". CityFibre. Retrieved 2024-01-07.
  21. ^ "CityFibre says goodbye to AIM under new ownership". Comms Business. 2018-06-22. Retrieved 2024-01-07.
  22. ^ "BT rival Cityfibre blames 'struggling' economy as it cuts 400 jobs". The Telegraph. 2023-02-01. Retrieved 2024-01-06.
  23. ^ Thomas, Daniel (2015-12-14). "CityFibre to challenge BT after network purchase". Financial Times. Archived from the original on 2019-09-25. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  24. ^ "CityFibre to bring full fibre internet to 8 million premises by 2025". Archived from the original on 2023-07-02. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  25. ^ "CityFibre and Vodafone complete first UK 2Gbps residential trial". Archived from the original on 2023-04-03. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  26. ^ Jackson, Mark (2022-07-25). "CityFibre Upgrade UK Network to 10Gbps Full Fibre Broadband UPDATE". ISPreview UK. Archived from the original on 2022-07-25. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  27. ^ "CityFibre inks strategic relationship with Toob". Archived from the original on 2023-04-12. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  28. ^ "CityFibre extends reach across southern England as it files Openreach competition complaint". Archived from the original on 2023-03-21. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  29. ^ "CityFibre lands latest Project Gigabit contract". Archived from the original on 2023-05-29. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  30. ^ Jackson, Mark (2023-07-01). "CityFibre Win Three Major UK Project Gigabit Broadband Rollout Contracts". ISPreview UK. Archived from the original on 2023-07-01. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  31. ^ "CityFibre says latest Project Gigabit contracts will enable extra 500,000 premises passed by FTTP". Archived from the original on 2023-07-01. Retrieved 2023-07-02.
  32. ^ "TalkTalk to use CityFibre for business customers -".
  33. ^ Jackson, Mark (2023-06-27). "First CityFibre UK ISP Launches Cheap 2.5Gbps Broadband Plan UPDATE". ISPreview UK. Retrieved 2023-07-04.
  34. ^ Jackson, Mark (2023-07-12). "CityFibre Officially Launch 2.5Gbps FTTP Home Broadband Tier". ISPreview UK. Retrieved 2023-07-18.
  35. ^ "CityFibre claims UK's fastest wholesale consumer broadband services | Computer Weekly". Retrieved 2023-07-18.
  37. ^ "Tackling consumer confusion about broadband technology". Ofcom. 2023-12-13. Retrieved 2024-01-06.
  38. ^ "Cityfibre UK Complete Bury St Edmunds FTTP Broadband Build".
  39. ^ "CityFibre | CITYFIBRE ACQUIRES LIT FIBRE, ACCELERATING ITS ROLLOUT BY…". CityFibre. Retrieved 2024-03-14.
  40. ^ "CityFibre spurs altnet consolidation with purchase of Lit Fibre". Sky News. Retrieved 2024-03-14.

External links edit