NBN revenue jumps as active users rise

(Australian Associated Press)


The company in charge of rolling out the national broadband network says it is well on track towards its long term goals after adding about 338,000 new homes and businesses to the system in the September quarter.

Most of the growth came on the back of a lift in the number of Fibre-to-the-Node (FTTN) connections.

The fast-to-implement technology, introduced in September 2015 despite criticism of its relative performance, is currently helping drive overall footprint expansion, NBN Co said.

The federal government-owned NBN reached 3.2 million premises by September 30.

Chief executive Bill Morrow said that number had now reached 3.4 million, representing nearly 30 per cent of the company’s overall 2020 target.

“This quarter’s result is further evidence that we are on track to achieve our long term targets,” he said over a conference call on Tuesday.

The corporation earned revenue of $181 million for the three months to September, more than double from a year ago, driven by a jump in active end-users.

Active users rose to 1.38 million at September-end, chief financial officer Stephen Rue said, compared to about 611,000 a year ago.

The user base rose more than 25 per cent in the three-month period, he said.

Average revenue per user – a key figure for the telecommunications industry – was steady at $43 a month over the year.

NBN incurred $1.48 billion in capital expenditure during the September quarter.

“We are adding more than 100,000 homes and businesses to NBN every month and I expect this number will only increase,” Mr Morrow said.

NBN said in September it would implement the new fibre-to-the-distribution-point (FTTdp) technology for 700,000 homes and businesses, as this would be cheaper than using the legacy Optus cable network.

About 400,000 of theses sites had been slated to get the more expensive HFC connections.


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