Telstra gets $1.6bn to help deliver NBN's HFC rollout

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Telstra gets $1.6bn to help deliver NBN's HFC rollout

Contract formally signed.

Telstra has won a $1.6 billion contract to help build out and upgrade its hybrid-fibre coaxial (HFC) network for the NBN. 

The deal comes on top of $11 billion definitive agreements already signed between Telstra and the national network builder, which were renegotiated in late 2014 to include Telstra's HFC network. 

The telco today said that under the deal - expected to run until 2020 - Telstra would deliver all design, program management, construction management and scheduling activities within its HFC footprint across Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Perth and Adelaide. 

The bulk of field construction would be undertaken by NBN build partners, the telco said, while Telstra would deliver in-exchange construction activities and limited upstream in-field construction. 

NBN and Telstra signed a memorandum of understanding for the contract late last year.

In the lead up to the formal signing, Telstra undertook some "early work" to prepare its exchanges and help with design and planning.

NBN is expected to announce a similar contract with Optus for its own HFC network, which the network builder similarly gained access to under the revised definitive agreements. Late last year it was revealed NBN was considering building over the Optus HFC network due to its degraded state.

“Telstra has a long and proud history in network construction and we believe we will bring great expertise to this important part of the NBN network. We are already mobilising our workforce to ensure we support NBN in their rollout schedule," Telstra CEO Andy Penn said in a statement.

NBN is currently undertaking HFC construction trials for both the Optus and Telstra networks in parts of NSW, Victoria and Queensland, alongside a 300-premise pilot program in Redcliffe and Scarborough in Queensland, and sandpit trials of services for retail service providers.

The network builder revealed the list of regions scheduled to receive HFC NBN connections last October.

It has pledged to deliver its wholesale HFC product to RSPs for sale to end users this year.

It is understood a wholesale HFC product for the Optus network will go live to around 20,000 premises in Redcliffe, Queensland in June this year, and expand more widely over the following 12 months.

Under the multi-technology mix NBN, 34 percent of premises will receive HFC connections. Around 38 percent are slated for fibre-to-the-node or basement connections.

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