BT and Fujitsu selected for UK broadband project

03 July 2012 | Kavit Majithia


UK telco giant BT and Fujitsu are the only two companies selected by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport to deliver the UK’s £530 million broadband project.

The two parties will compete for government funds to roll out broadband in various parts of the UK, but skeptics suggest there is no guarantee that the companies will bid for every tender.

The project aims to provide fast broadband access to 90% of the UK by 2015, and ensure a minimum of 2Mbps throughout the rest of the country.

Nine companies passed the first stage of the selection project, but it appears many were deterred at the prospect of the high cost, and expected low return of connecting remote areas in the UK.

The project, which is designed to cut costs for councils, means the local authorities can select pre-approved providers for rolling out broadband and thus accelerating the speed of access in rural areas. Fujitsu is competing for tenders in Cumbria and North Yorkshire, and is expected to compete with BT in other areas of the UK.

The Financial Times suggests BT has a distinct advantage in the bidding process, considering its nationwide fixed-line network and the company has already been selected in the UK counties of Rutland and Lancashire.

BT has said, even with government funding, there is an expected low return on investment by connecting remote areas.