Berne, 26 February 2010
Over the next five years, households in Lucerne will be connected to the fibre-optic network. ewl energie wasser luzern and Swisscom have agreed to cooperate on the project. Together the two companies will drive forward this expansion and invest a total of around CHF 90 million. Four fibres will be laid per household: one for Swisscom and the others for ewl.
The cooperation partners ewl and Swisscom will work together to expand the fibre-optic network to provide comprehensive coverage in Lucerne. The fibre-optic cables needed for this will be laid by both companies: While Swisscom is responsible for laying cables between neighbourhoods and telephone exchanges, ewl will lay the fibres into individual households. Swisscom will bear 60 per cent and ewl 40 per cent of these forward-looking investments, which will come to a total of around CHF 90 million. For Lucerne's fibre-optic network, this will involve laying several fibres per household, thereby enabling competition on an open infrastructure ("open access").
Ninety per cent of Lucerne's residents should have a fibre-optic connection by 2014. Both ewl and Swisscom's existing cable infrastructures are to be used for Lucerne's new fibre-optic network. The costs for building and operating the network can therefore be optimised and the total cost of the investment kept low. "By international comparison, Switzerland's telecommunications network is currently one of the world's best. And this will continue to hold true with the expansion of the fibre-optic network," explains Carsten Schloter, CEO of Swisscom.
Non-discriminatory access will give all providers access to Lucerne's fibre-optic network and further promote competition on the telecommunications market. "Customers will benefit from being able to choose between offerings from various service providers," says Stephan Marty, CEO of ewl. The first fibre-optic offerings will be available to customers in Lucerne from the second half of 2010.