Ono, which is private equity-owned, offers cable TV and internet services to 1.9 million Spanish households. Prior to the bid by Vodaphone, Ono’s owners had been planning to float the company on the Madrid stock exchange.
Vodaphone plans to spend £25 billion of the £84 billion they generated from the recent sale of their stake in US mobile phone operator Verizon Wireless. Vittorio Colao, Vodaphone’s boss said the deal was “an attractive value creation opportunity”.
Vodaphone has been growing steadily in developing markets such as India, but their European offering has been depressed by competition and economic condition.
This swoop will complement Vodaphone’s fiber to the home build programme, which will now incorporate areas of Spain where Ono previously had limited or no network presence. This deal has materialised just 6 months after Vodaphone acquired a controlling stake in Kabel, a German cable operator.
During the recent three-day FTTH Council of Europe Conference in Stockholm, president Karin Ahl claimed Ireland’s broadband services will suffer in the near future due to current fiber offerings. There’s currently only around 14,000 Irish homes being supplied with superfast broadband through FTTH technology, just a tiny fraction of the occupied homes in Ireland.
Karin Ahl has been president of the FTTH Council Europe since March 2012 and is a business developer at Rala Infratech in Sweden. With over five years’ experience working for the FTTH council Europe.
Currently, the majority of products on offer on the Irish broadband market are based on fiber to the cabinet (FTTC) standards, meaning residents and business broadband connections are delivered to the nearest cabinet, rather than being directly connected into the home or business premises. Ahl quoted “I have never seen that anybody has designed a network that’s to the cabinet that will work in 25 years’ time.”
It was also revealed that recently, Irish Governments representatives have shown interest in FTTH by seeking advice from the Council but they are yet to take action.
SiFi Networks is well ahead of the game in terms of FTTH technology and strongly believes FTTC is a design methodology of the past to be avoided where possible. We would warmly welcome an invitation from the Irish Government to structure FTTH deployment for the betterment of their communities.