France Telecom and SFR partner to deploy fibre in densely populated areas

France Telecom has partnered with SFR to deploy optical fibre in the surrounding areas across the densely-populated areas of France.

9.8 million French home are in agglomerations where both operators have redundant deployment projects, and the expansion is part of a strategy adopted by both operators to address this. Within the terms of the agreement, France Telecom will serve 7.5 million of these households and SFR will address the remaining 2.3 million.

The new initiative follows previous deployment plans that each submitted to the French state investment agency, the Commissariat Général à l'Investissement. The agreement is aimed at avoiding project duplication by designating the operator responsible for deployment in each commune in a way that ensures the best deployment schedule and network coverage. Each company agreed to cover each commune no later than five years after the deployment process has started.

France Telecom and SFR will maintain a commercial presence in the areas covered by the agreement. Each will buy wholesale services from the group that will ultimately deploy the local network. By conditions set out by French regulator ARCEP, all other market players will be able to obtain access to the infrastructure deployed by either operator.

Fibre is expected to reach nearly 60% of French households by 2020 thanks to private operator investment.

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