TPG creates new retail arm for FTTB

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TPG creates new retail arm for FTTB

Exclusive: Meet Wondercom.

TPG has quietly created a new retail arm to allow ithe company to sell its wholesale fibre-to-the-basement product to residential customers.

The internet service provider is required under the Government's carrier license condition to functionally separate its retail and wholesale businesses due to the competitive threat its FTTB network posed to the national broadband network.

Announced last December, ISPs such as TPG were required to offer non-discriminatory wholesale access to their networks by January this year and split out their retail and wholesale operations by June 30.

In the lead up to the functional separation deadline, TPG has quietly begun the process to transfer its retail customers to Wondercom, a retail business focused solely on retailing TPG's FTTB product.

The business was registered as a company with ASIC in mid April, iTnews can reveal.

The shift to Wondercom for TPG FTTB retail customers will become official as of July 1 - the deadline for functional separation of TPG's wholesale and retail business.

TPG did not respond to requests for comment, and would only say Wondercom was a "wholesale customer of the TPG Group".

However, it has recently started informing FTTB retail customers they will be shifted off TPG and onto Wondercom.

"You may have read about a recent declaration by the Minister for Communications that affects TPG's ability to continue to supply FTTB services directly to you," TPG wrote.

"As a consequence of that declaration, TPG has decided that the FTTB network is to be operated on a wholesale only basis.

"We are therefore writing to advise you that, pursuant to clause 15 of the standard terms and conditions, TPG has agreed to transfer to Wondercom all of the rights and obligations under the contracts TPG has with all its FTTB customers."

It said the terms and conditions of customer contracts, technical delivery, plan details, billing and payments would be unaffected. 

Wondercom is offering an FTTB + home phone bundle for $69.99 per month. The package promises speeds of between 50Mbps and 100Mbps download and up to 20Mbps upload, unlimited data, unlimited local and national calls, 100 international minutes and an included wi-fi modem.

A six-month plan includes a $99.95 set-up fee, while the fee is foregone in an 18-month plan.

The offering is only available to residential users in 500,000 select apartments across metropolitan Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth.

The plan mirrors identically the retail FTTB plan currently for sale by TPG.

TPG introduced a $45 monthly fully managed wholesale FTTB product to retail partners in March.

It is also required to offer a Layer 2 wholesale product for $27 per month under the carrier license condition before December 2016.

TPG FTTB retailers include AusBBS and nbnsp. Both also offer services on the NBN.

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