Thursday, April 25, 2019

Orange and Vodafone extend network sharing in Spain for 5G

Vodafone and Orange agreed to extend their current active mobile network sharing arrangement in Spain to include 5G. The original network sharing agreement signed in 2006 covered passive infrastructure nationwide and active infrastructure in smaller towns. The agreement was subsequently renewed in 2012 and in 2016.

Under the new agreement, Vodafone will be able to offer its customers broadband access and other fixed services on Orange’s fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network. Both companies have also agreed to explore potential co-investment opportunities to expand their fibre footprint in the future. The partnership is also expanded to include 5G. The terms of the new agreement allow active network sharing (including both the radio access network and high-speed backhaul) in cities with populations of up to 175,000 people, whereas the previous arrangement only enabled sharing in towns of between 1,000 and 25,000 people. Two thirds of the Spanish population will now be covered by Vodafone and Orange’s shared network agreement, with 14,800 sites expected to be shared vs. 5,600 shared today. The new agreement is expected to deliver cumulative opex and capex savings to Vodafone of at least €600 million over the next ten years.

Vodafone and Orange will continue to operate independent infrastructure in the biggest cities.

Nick Read, Chief Executive of Vodafone, said, “Vodafone is committed to deliver the best gigabit networks. As we approach a 5G world, we have a window of opportunity to design networks with other operators who share our passion for quality and coverage. These network sharing agreements mean we can provide a better service to customers, help us to address coverage requirements faster and more efficiently and also reduce the industry’s environmental impact.”

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