Eir fibre broadband network reaches 2m premises

2 Sep 2020

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Announcing its full-year 2020 financial results, Eir revealed that it has reached more than 80pc of premises in Ireland with fibre broadband.

The latest earnings report from Eir fell in line with expectations, in what the company has described as “consistent, solid results”.

The company’s full fiscal year figures for 2020 recorded a 2pc drop in revenue to €1.224bn. Operating costs at the company were also down, reduced by €27m to €379m.

“We have successfully sustained our trajectory and achieved our full-year guidance targets, with EBITDA growth of 4pc for the year, operating cost savings of 7pc, capital investment in our fibre and mobile networks of €265m, and a continued strong cash position of €255m at the end of June,” said CFO Stephen Tighe.

‘We have plans to roll out 5G to every major town in Ireland and continue passing more homes and businesses with ultrafast broadband’

In terms of business milestones reached, Eir reported that its fibre broadband network now reaches approximately 82pc of premises in Ireland, amounting to around 2m premises.

Since this time last year, a further 201,000 premises across Ireland have been passed with fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) from Eir, increasing the network’s reach by 54pc to more than half a million premises.

Within that network, the most recent quarter saw a further 66,000 urban and suburban locations reached with the company’s superfast FTTH gigabit broadband, with more than 138,000 passed in total by the end of June 2020.

Eir has also continued building out its 5G network for improved mobile data speeds, with this next-generation networking technology now available in 21 towns and cities across the country.

Continued investment

Keeping networks fully operational during a pandemic has brought a unique set of challenges for telecoms in 2020. Eir CEO Carolan Lennon stressed that the company is following strict guidelines to ensure health and safety while prioritising mobile network upgrades to enable those working from home.

“Keeping Ireland connected in these unprecedented times has not been easy, and I would like to thank all of the extremely dedicated people at Eir for their ongoing efforts,” she said.

“Our engineers have continued to connect homes throughout this difficult period and they have worked tirelessly to maintain and upgrade our fibre and mobile networks across Ireland. Our care teams are working extremely hard in new and unprecedented working environments to support our customers. While our retail stores have reopened, the vast majority of our staff continue to work remotely or in the field.”

The global crisis is not going to stop Eir’s investment, however, which is set to continue in the coming months. “We have plans to roll out 5G to every major town in Ireland and continue passing more homes and businesses with ultrafast broadband,” said Lennon.

“Our ongoing €1bn capital investment programme is playing an important role in ensuring our network remains fully operational and we will continue to roll out our upgrade programmes where it is safe to do so.”

Eir also announced that GoMo, the virtual mobile network launched less than a year ago, now has more than 200,000 customers.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.