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Huawei signs second big Crown fibre supplier contract, landing Enable

Enable picks Chinese giant.

Chris Keall
Wed, 08 Feb 2012

Huawei has landed its second major fibre deal under the $1.35 billion Ultrafast Fibre roll-out (UFB).

Christchurch UFB winner Enable Networks (owned by the council) said this morning it had chosen the company to provide fibre, ducting and layer 2 electronics.

In November, Huawei won the contract to provide fibre and layer 2 electronics to central North Island UFB winner  Ultrafast Fibre – a consortium led by lines company Wel Networks – won contracts covering Hamilton, Tauranga, Tokoroa, New Plymouth, Hawera, Wanganui, Te Awamutu and Cambridge.

Ericsson has been named as the fibre contract winner for Chorus, which won the lion’s share of the UFB roll out. (UPDATE: Chorus told NBR this afternoon that it has yet to put its layer 2 contract out to tender. "In the meantime, we will continue to draw upon our existing partnerships," a spokesman said. Existing partners include long-time supplier Alcatel Lucent, the spokesman confirmed.)

In December, Chorus said it had picked Huawei to provide fibre equipment for segments of the $300 million Rural Broadband Initiative. "Our arrangement with Huawei is to provide specialist equipment for some RBI applications, to suggest they are supplying all equipment for the project is not correct," a Chorus spokesman told NBR.

With a second Chinese company, Axin, Huawei is also involved in a mooted second transtasman cable.

Huawei is also 2degrees main network partner and, more recently through a $100 million credit line, the funder of its expansion.

In July 2010, Prime Minister John Key - who had recently visited Huawei in China as part of a trip to the Shanghai World Expo - praised the Chinese company as potentially cost-effective Crown fibre partner.

"No one's saying they would be the final selected partner in New Zealand but they've certainly got the capacity if they wanted to," Mr Key said.

Chris Keall
Wed, 08 Feb 2012
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Huawei signs second big Crown fibre supplier contract, landing Enable