Swisscom, Switzerland’s largest provider of broadband, wireless and fixed telephony services by subscribers, has signed a deal with local utility company Aziende Municipalizzate di Bellinzona (AMB) to collaborate on the construction of a fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network in Bellinzona. AMB started rolling out fibre-optic cable in the city in 2010, whilst Swisscom followed suit in September the following year. Under the terms of the agreement, Swisscom will continue to construct the network in the city itself, connecting 10,000 homes and business, whilst AMB will build a further 4,000 connections in the outlying areas of the Ticino canton. The project has a price tag of CHF47 million (USD51.2 million), of which Swisscom will provide 60% and AMB the remaining 40%.
The deal is the twelfth of its kind signed thus far, with Swisscom having inked deals with utility providers in eleven other cities including Berne, Geneva and Zurich. As previously reported by CommsUpdate, Switzerland’s telecoms watchdog, the Federal Communications Commission (ComCom) issued a ‘de facto ban’ on the agreements in September 2011 amidst concerns that certain conditions of the deals might hamper competition. The deals were subsequently re-negotiated, however and have now been given the green light by ComCom.