SFN accuses Swisscom of ‘monopolistic behaviour’ for backing out of open fibre programme

21 May 2021

Swiss fibre infrastructure provider Swiss Fibre Net (SFN) has accused state-owned full-service provider Swisscom of ‘unacceptable monopolistic behaviour’ after the company withdrew from a programme to jointly deploy fibre networks in Sissach with local energy provider Elektra Sissach, a partner of SFN. According to a statement from SFN, Elektra Sissach and Swisscom were engaged in talks last year regarding a coordinated expansion of the local fibre network, under which the utility firm was aiming to extend fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) to 7,000 residents by the end of 2023 at a cost of around CHF7.5 million. SFN claims that Swisscom withdrew from the negotiations in February this year without explanation and is now planning to roll out its own fibre system in the area. Under Elektra Sissach/SFN’s plan, the deployed fibre would be open to any operator on a non-discriminatory basis but, according to SFN, Swisscom’s decision to build its own network ‘is torpedoing efforts for an open fibre network.’

SFN CEO Andreas Waber was quoted as saying of Swisscom’s decision: ‘It is very shocking that Swisscom – contrary to all sensible alternatives – has chosen to do it alone. The construction work now has to be carried out twice – once for Elektra Sissach and once for Swisscom. This is not only an unnecessary additional burden for the residents of Sissach, it is also economically questionable.’

Switzerland, Swisscom