One of the barriers to retail competition over local fibre networks has been lack of software to connect retail service provider systems with those of local infrastructure providers. Now fibre companies in Ireland have joined forces to address this issue.
Enet, a wholesale communications provider, has signed a deal with SIRO that will enable enet to become a SIRO aggregator.
The agreement means enet can combine SIRO’s fibre-to-the-building (FTTB) infrastructure with its own metropolitan area networks and national fibre network to create an end-to-end service that’s open to all retail service providers.
The two companies had previously inked a deal allowing SIRO to use enet’s network as an integral part of its build. The deeper relationship will allow enet to connect the SIRO network to additional national and regional broadband retailers.
Underpinning the deal, enet has made a significant investment in the development of an automated software platform that can aggregate and manage enet’s own network with third-party infrastructure – in this case, SIRO’s.
The new platform combines qualification, provisioning, billing, ticketing and lifecycle management across both wholesale and retail services and supports large, small and specialist retail service providers in the provision of superfast broadband to end users.
Commenting on the deal, Conal Henry, enet CEO, said: “enet doesn’t compete with our retail service provider customers, of which there are now over 70, so we want to enable them all – be they small regional players or large multinationals – to compete on an even footing and have access to the same high-quality fibre footprint.”
This initiative enables local broadband providers all over the country to access SIRO’s fibre networks through one simple integration with enet and this, in turn, will allow them to utilise enet for all their wholesale network requirements, he adds.
The enet software platform allows broadband retailers to target individual SIRO towns or offer services nationally, as well as delivering a more cost-effective solution for smaller operators to sell FTTB services to their local area.
SIRO is a joint venture between Ireland’s Electricity Supply Board (ESB) and Vodafone to build FTTB networks in selected cities (see Vodafone Group expands FTTH networks in Ireland). SIRO’s network is live in 11 towns: Dundalk, Carrigaline, Sligo, Letterkenny, Tralee, Cavan, Wexford, Skibbereen, Drogheda, Mullingar and Ennis. Construction is advanced in a further five towns: Castlebar, Westport, Portlaoise, Newbridge and Carlow.
“Our partnership with enet highlights the industry demand for an alternative national telecoms infrastructure,” said Sean Atkinson, SIRO CEO. “As we are rolling out a 100 per cent fibre-optic network, we are not constrained by outdated copper technology, which means we can deliver the best broadband experience in Ireland. Together with enet and our other partners, we will reverse the digital divide in Ireland and future-proof the country’s broadband needs for decades ahead.”