Feeds

Fujitsu pulls a muscle, drops out of race for £530m broadband pot

BT now ONLY bidder for UK taxpayer-funded fibre jobs

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Fujitsu has admitted it will no longer bid for money from a £530m pot of taxpayer cash to roll-out broadband in Britain's countryside - effectively leaving the lot up for grabs by BT.

The national telco has to date been the only preferred bidder to bag any of the dosh, dished out by the government's Ministry of Fun through its Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) programme for rural parts of Blighty.

Fujitsu today told The Reg what it told the Financial Times on Friday:

Various conditions surrounding the BDUK process, which we have discussed with the [Department for Culture, Media and Sport], effectively rule Fujitsu out of the competition for new areas. So while we remain supportive of the process and its objectives, we are not actively pursuing opportunities within it.

But many will argue that Fujitsu's exit has now turned the entire process into an absolute joke.

The Japanese tech giant, which had been the only other preferred bidder for the BDUK funds, has appeared resigned to failure for many, many months now. And it didn't help when, in September 2012, the Cabinet Office effectively froze the company out of bids for being too "high risk" to take on public-sector contracts.

BT was clearly pleased as punch with the outcome. It gave The Register this statement today:

If other companies have withdrawn from the process it is because they are unwilling to invest the large sums that are required without being guaranteed a short-term return.

That is despite several of them pledging to make such an investment. In contrast, BT has stood by its promises saying it will invest up to a billion pounds via the process but accepting that the payback period will be more than ten years.

This approach has proved popular with county councils who are seeking a long term partner who will deliver a network that is open to all ISPs.

Last year, competition concerns stalled the BDUK process when European Commission officials investigated whether BT dominated the broadband market in Blighty. After months of wrangling between Whitehall and Brussels, state aid for fibre broadband deployment to the UK countryside was finally given the go ahead.

However, since then it has become clear that the Tory-led coalition government's target to bring super-fast broadband to 90 per cent of homes and businesses across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland by 2015 has now slipped. With every new announcement from BT trumpeting another BDUK win, the completion date is invariably 2016. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
TEEN RAMPAGE: Kids in iPhone 6 'Will it bend' YouTube 'prank'
iPhones bent in Norwich? As if the place wasn't weird enough
Consumers agree to give up first-born child for free Wi-Fi – survey
This Herod network's ace – but crap reception in bullrushes
Crouching tiger, FAST ASLEEP dragon: Smugglers can't shift iPhone 6s
China's grey market reports 'sluggish' sales of Apple mobe
Sea-Me-We 5 construction starts
New sub cable to go live 2016
New EU digi-commish struggles with concepts of net neutrality
Oettinger all about the infrastructure – but not big on substance
PEAK IPV4? Global IPv6 traffic is growing, DDoS dying, says Akamai
First time the cache network has seen drop in use of 32-bit-wide IP addresses
EE coughs to BROKEN data usage metrics BLUNDER that short-changes customers
Carrier apologises for 'inflated' measurements cockup
Comcast: Help, help, FCC. Netflix and pals are EXTORTIONISTS
The others guys are being mean so therefore ... monopoly all good, yeah?
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.