TIM reportedly intends to spend €4.5bn on new fibre

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Bloomberg says the Italian incumbent is planning to accelerate its fibre-optic broadband rollout throughout the country.

Apparently the operator launched a tender earlier this month as part of its plans to increase its FTTH coverage to around 10 million Italian premises, including the maintenance and upgrade of about 13 million lines.

In August, TIM restated its commitment to bridge the digital divide in Italy by 2021: It pointed to how it has accelerated its fibre-optic rollout, for example, bringing ultrabroadband to two-thirds of families in poorly served so-called white areas' providing coverage for over 2,000 municipalities since March.

The tender would be one of the first to involve TIM’s last-mile fibre and copper grid company FiberCop, with bids for the 2021 to 2025 contracts expected by end-November, according to Bloomberg.

Complicated transaction

In a complicated transaction, TIM recently sold a 37.5% stake in FiberCop to US investment fund KKR Infrastructure for €1.8 billion.

This is expected to pave the way for the government’s long-cherished plan to merge FiberCop with Open Fiber to create a single fibre infrastructure operator called AccessCo.

The whole thing is still making its painful way through the necessary regulatory approvals at national and EU levels. In the meantime, after so many twists and turns in the single-fibre company saga, it appears TIM is determined to make progress, as it promised.