Vodafone and the UFB project?

By John Nixon 10/05/2010

Vodafone has formed an alliance with Canadian company Axia NetMedia to bid for New Zealand’s planned ultrafast broadband project.
Who would have thought? I was betting on the power companies with their nation-wide coverage of power lines and ducts. Or Telecom New Zealand et al.
But Vodafone?
They are a huge force, so their bid should not be taken lightly.
But I seriously doubt that CFH (Crown Fibre Holdings) will embrace their proposal, as the NZ Govt are trying to keep the network open and independant, away from the corporate giants.
Extracts from the news item:
“If Axia and Vodafone were successful bidders, a new company would be created to build network assets and Vodafone would take a stake in this company. By partnering with Vodafone, Axia would not be able to present itself as a pure play network wholesaler.
Vodafone has also been reported to be talking to Vector, which is expected to bid for the Auckland network, and to other parties.”
Contrary to Australia, the New Zealand UFB project attracts very little press, or political debate.
Let’s hope that things are progressing logically and quietly in the background and that we end up with an excellent end result for the country.

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