The President of the Autonomous Province of Trento Lorenzo Dellai, the Chairman of Telecom Italia, Franco Bernabè, the Chairman of McLink Paolo Nuti, and Chairman of Finanziaria Trentina Lino Benassi, today signed the go ahead for Trentino NGN, a company that will build a fibre optic next generation access network (NGAN).
The aim is to connect with fibre optic over 150,000 homes, around 60% of the province's entire housing stock. Local authorities, hospitals, universities, research bodies and businesses will also receive high speed links.
The new company will have an initial capital of €96 million, the Autonomous Province of Trento taking a majority 52% stake. For its part Telecom Italia will contribute to the capitalization of Trentino NGN by conferring the right to use the civil infrastructures necessary for the laying of the fibre, while McLink and Finanziaria Trentina will underwrite their quotas in cash.
Once specific levels of service penetration have been reached, it is foreseen that Telecom Italia may contribute its copper network to the capital of Trentino NGN, acquiring the majority and facilitating the migration from copper to fibre. Telecom Italia has also negotiated with the Province an option to acquire its stake in the company, to be exercised after six years for a sum equal to the investment made plus an annual interest rate of 7.5%.
Trentino NGN expects to spend €165 million over the next 10 years to complete the project (bringing fibre optic to homes in the area, maintenance of the network and providing service to all TLC operators wishing to use it).
Today's agreement follows the memorandum of understanding signed by the Autonomous Province of Trento and Telecom Italia on February 8, 2011 to start the project, after wide consultations with all TLC operators in a spirit of transparency and non-discrimination.
The Autonomous Province of Trento and Telecom Italia are already working together on a project to bridge the digital divide and deliver ADSL at speeds of up to 20 megabits/second to the whole province within two years.
President Lorenzo Dellai stated: “The new technologies assure higher competitiveness for the territories. They are new tools for the families, young people and businesses allowing them to meet the challenges of an increasingly global world. Fibre optic, in particular, is a legacy that we have a duty to deliver to the new generations who will be called upon to build the Trentino and Italy of tomorrow. The Trentino NGN project is confirmation that the public and private sectors can and must work together with the primary aim of meeting the needs of citizens and society.”
“Telecom Italia has always been committed to providing the country with a modern high performance net infrastructure and we will continue to pursue this goal," said Franco Bernabè. “Migration to fixed and mobile ultrabroadband networks is a complex process that requires huge investments at a time of great economic distress and uncertainty of the demand. It will thus be necessary to adopt new network architectures, new business models, and new regulatory frameworks. Experimenting collaboration and co-investment models of the public and private sector can speed migration towards the next generation networks and Trentino NGN represents one of the first concrete examples of public private partnership in Europe.”
"As an operator with deep roots in Trentino, we felt it was important to make our contribution to an initiative that will certainly have beneficial knock-on effects for the local economy," stressed McLink chairman, Paolo Nuti. After all the debate about how to boost the development of next generation networks and services in Italy, I believe that Trentino NGN represents an ideal laboratory in which to finally test the economic and technical consistency of the hypotheses that have been put forward over the last two years.”
The chairman of Finanziaria Trentina, Lino Benassi said he was “pleased with the launch of the joint-venture Trentino NGN, which places the Autonomous Province of Trento at the cutting edge worldwide. It will give all Trentino firms and families access to the latest network services which are vital to growth and development in an increasingly competitive economic environment.”
Trento, 16 December 2011