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Fibre contributions rewarded at FTTH Conference

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AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS – Outstanding contributions to the acceleration of FTTH in Europe were rewarded at the FTTH Conference in Amsterdam, with Orange Spain and Dana Tobak, chief executive officer of Hyperoptic taking away prizes. In addition, Greg Mesch, chief executive officer at CityFibre picked up the inaugural Charles Kao Award.

Ronan Kelly, president of the FTTH Council Europe presented the winners with their awards. Of Tobak’s achievement he said: ‘Hyperoptic’s networks is expanding at an incredible speed. It has been growing its network reach by over 100 per cent for the last three years in a row and as the driving force behind this, the FTTH Council Europe wanted to acknowledge Dana's tremendous work in making FTTH more accessible.’

Accepting the award on behalf of Tobak, Pascal Koster, CTIO of Hyperoptic commented: ‘To be recognised by her industry peers means a great deal to Dana. When she co-founded Hyperoptic it was with the aim to shake up the UK broadband sector, which had been neglected for too long with a compelling full fibre offering. With her team, Hyperoptic is delivering on this vision and we look forward to continue working with our partners in the industry to deliver the full fibre broadband the UK needs.’

Of Orange Spain’s award Kelly said: ‘The Spanish market is an example of achievement for FTTH deployment. Last year the choice of Spain as location for the FTTH Conference was highly symbolic and we are pleased to see this virtuous trend continuing with the FTTH award going to Orange Spain this year. We wanted to recognise the role of Orange Spain as a challenger investing massively on the Spanish market.’

Receiving the award on behalf of Orange Spain, Gervais Pellissier indicated: ‘We are very proud at Orange Group of this success of our Spanish colleagues - congratulations and thanks everyone at Orange Spain! In 20 years they have developed fantastically, becoming the country's incontestable number two. Fibre has been a key component of the Orange growth strategy, and Spain is our most successful operation in this respect, representing nearly 3 million out of our Group's almost 6.5 million FTTH lines at the end of 2018.’

At the closing ceremony of the FTTH Conference 2019, the FTTH Council Europe has presented the Charles Kao Award, in honour of fibre pioneer Professor Charles Kao who passed away in 2018. Greg Mesch was selected for several reasons. Most recently he was recognised for his contribution to the acceleration of full fibre deployment in the UK. Speaking at the ceremony of the FTTH Conference, Kelly said: ‘When we decided to create the Charles Kao Award, it was clear that the winner had to be a firm believer in the benefits of full fibre. CityFibre’s strategic partnership with Vodafone, its recent fundraise of over £1.1 billion towards its rollout to at least 20 per cent of the UK market as well as his global experience of several other markets such as the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany is testament to Greg’s leadership and the scale of his contribution to our industry.’

Accepting the award, Mesch said: ‘To be associated with Charles Kao, such an innovator in our industry, is a real honour so I’m delighted and grateful for this award. With the potential of a full fibre future dawning on countries around the world, it has been a rare privilege to help set the four different countries on a path to making it happen. I urge all those individuals keen to do the same to reject the status quo and harness the desire for a new generation of businesses to take the reins.’

www.ftthcouncil.eu