Alternative broadband infrastructure builder Hyperoptic has confirmed that its full-fibre network has now reached 750,000 UK premises, as it targets two million homes by the end of 2023.
The UK is now crowded with companies laying full-fibre wiring, but Hyperoptic was one of the pioneers. It emerged in 2011 with a plan to connect large residential and office buildings in London to one of the country’s first-ever gigabit-capable broadband services. Eventually expanding to other cities and to new build developments, Hyperoptic had reached 100,000 premises by 2015 and 400,000 by 2019.
Hyperoptic also set ambitious targets, including reaching two million premises by the end of 2021 and five million by 2025.
Although outside observers speculated last summer that the altnet would miss the first of those goals, Hyperoptic was quiet about its reach, with its last official data published in 2019.
This week it broke that silence, acknowledging that its earlier targets were overly ambitious and setting a more realistic goal for the end of 2023.
By the beginning of 2024, Hyperoptic now wants to bring full-fibre broadband to two million homes and get “at least 30%” of those properties to sign up.
Dana Tobak, CEO of Hyperoptic, said: “Our plan is to continue scaling whilst delivering a phenomenal customer experience and, crucially, ensuring we maintain our strong customer take-up rates. To drive that, we are also setting the twin goals of our network passing two million homes by the end of 2023, whilst also maintaining a penetration rate of at least 30% where our network is over two years old.”
The 30% take-up target is ambitious but Hyperoptic can back it up. With 230,000 customers signed up now, it already has a penetration of 30.67%—and some of those 750,000 connections aren't yet two years old.
Tobak also took swipes at competitors, saying that her company’s revenues, at £51.7m, are “eight times that of Community Fibre [£3.77m] and G.Networks [2.63m] combined.”
However, she didn’t include major rival CityFibre, which has brought full fibre to one million premises and has a war chest of £4 billion to reach eight million by 2025.
In comments to ISPreview, Tobak also discussed Hyperoptic’s previous missed targets. “We set ourselves some pretty lofty goals in our early days. Since then we have learnt an incredible amount about scaling our build method, adapted our build model to ensure we continue to deliver value to our customers and shareholders alike, all whilst navigating external factors like the pandemic,” she said.
Meanwhile, these altnets will have serious competition from the telecoms giants. Virgin Media O2 (VMO2) announced last week that it will bring full-fibre broadband to 23 million premises by the end of 2027, while BT’s Openreach is targeting 25 million by the end of 2026.
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