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NextGenUs and Fibrestream a short step away from administration
Friday 13 April 2012 11:44:23 by Andrew Ferguson

The turmoil that has been the NextGenUs saga is coming to a crucial point in its story, with a Leeds High Court hearing due today, which should place both NextGenUs UK CIC and Fibrestream Limited into formal joint administration.

It appears that even though the formal hearing is not complete, that offers are being taken for parts of the network/hardware, which has services running in Hull and East Yorkshire, Cumbria, North Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. A variety of fixed wireless and fibre networks were deployed by the two companies.

Update 17:30: It seems an attempt has been made by the administrator to sell the assets of the company for the best price, with a very rushed auction, that lasted 28 minutes. Fortunately it seems some offers had been sought in the 24 hour period from when administration was practically a formality. The short window has resulted in a second round of offers, for Hull & Ashby, Cumbria and North Yorkshire. The indications are that Connexin has taken on the Hull and Lincoln network assets according to an Unofficial Karoo Forum post.

The rush is because suppliers have obviously reached the end of their tether and credit limits and without a commitment from a new network owner then service provision is not guaranteeed at all in even the short term, let alone the long term.

Comments

Posted by GMAN99 over 5 years ago
So where did it all go wrong?

"Today, we are a company focused on delivering high speed Fibre to the Home / Premises internet access in rural areas where the big players say it is uneconomical to do so. "

Oh maybe it is uneconomical and we'll go bust?

Too late

Or maybe it was them making up connectivity that doesn't exist like FI:WI which are two distinct forms of connectivity.
Posted by creakycopperline over 5 years ago
You're a firm bet Gmann99, knowing the resident BT propaganda spokesman will be on here putting the boot in a smaller telco that is willing to stick it's neck out where BT are too sissy to do so, and don't give me that crap about them not being charities when they're chasing govournment BDUK cash. i await your BT crony themed comment with baited breath.
Posted by undecidedadrian over 5 years ago
but all the BT haters keep on saying that rural areas can be made economical are seeing that actually they aren't.

BT too "sissy" or just a well run company that knows where to invest their money.

@creaky I assume that when BT makes FTTC avaliable in your area you will not taking up any service as you obviously hate BT with a passion that you will wait until a new local loop is installed in your area.
Posted by mervl over 5 years ago
Many co's suffer personality clashes, sometimes fatal; and even the "great" BT lost a stash in its international division, I seem to recall, but had its national tax - sorry (utility) bill - payer base (inherited from its nationalised days) to bail it out. If the assets are worth buying it can't have done everything wrong.
Posted by creakycopperline over 5 years ago
ahhh being called a BT hater, the automated response of a fanboy, no they wait for other smaller providers to throw themselves on the fire, and beg the gov to throw BDUK cash at them. whilst all the time pissing cash into 21cn which saved them a bit of cash, in about 5 years time, which will end up in someones back pocket, "chairmans i bet" oh and this is the same company that cons customers into 5 year contracts in small print.
Posted by GMAN99 over 5 years ago
No mention of BT in the article or from me so I'm not sure what you are going on about.
Posted by undecidedadrian over 5 years ago
Creaky seems to think his anti BT stance doesn't make him a BT hater and when you call him out of it you just get called a fanboy.

Of course he was unable to tell the difference between bits and bytes and kept on saying his 5meg line was only 500k which really doesn't help any position he wishes to take.
Posted by creakycopperline over 5 years ago
@undecidedadrian they like to call it MB to make it sound faster, also look at this video, and listen to 01:47 part of the video, then you'll know what i mean
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7sgEKScKKMA&feature=relmfu

big players = BT <<obvious
Posted by creakycopperline over 5 years ago
also note the part in the video at 4 minutes
Posted by Somerset over 5 years ago
Data links are defined as bits/s. File sizes are measured in bytes. No deception.
Posted by Spectre_01 over 5 years ago
Creaky, I don't often post but I gotta say that video is the biggest load of rubbish I've ever watched, beyond the fact that 1-byte = 8bits which is really basic stuff the idea that Internet companies advertise in Kb to make the numbers look bigger is only an opinion & a completely unfounded one at that, you make yourself look foolish just for posting it & also note the author has disabled comments, guess he didn't want the comeback...
Posted by Spectre_01 over 5 years ago
cont...

You'll actually find that most ISP's advertise in Mb not Kb, so if they wanted to make the numbers look big they'd advertise an up-to 8192Kbps service as it is they will advertise up to 8Mb, 16Mb, 24Mb <-smaller numbers.

Why do they use bits instead of bytes? probably because thats the industry standard for everything from video players (DVD/BD) to computer specs - google things like SATA, USB trasfer rates, it'll all be listed in Gbps - Giga BITS pers second.

Your anti-BT we get that, thats fine just get a bit more educated first.
Posted by Spectre_01 over 5 years ago
Back on-topic, its unfortuante that NextGenUs and Fibrestream gave gone bust, competition in the market place and seeing other companies do a next gen rollout is nothing but good but it really is a repeat of the cable TV rollout from 20 years ago, how many of those original cable operators are still around? Props to any company - BT included - that can make it work.
Posted by kingbiscit over 5 years ago
I didn't hate BT until I moved to an area with poor speeds, my last house I was spoilt for choice having access to both Cable and fast ADSL.

The village I live in, isn't remote and also does make financial sense, there would be a very large uptake of FTC if it was available. BT however have realised the village has no competition as there is no cable and they are quite happy taking our money to provide the bulk of the 700+ houses with less than 1MB some can't even get a connection.

...





Posted by kingbiscit over 5 years ago
...

Funnily enough a couple of villages very close have just been enabled with FTC and they coincidently have Virgin Media available. I think this is the main problem with BT and there attitude to rollout. Villages like mine should have been done first.

I contacted NextGenUs in Oct 2011 and within a couple of months had reached the 100+ target of subscribers in the village they set. Its very sad to hear NextGenUs have gone under and I really hope someone else can come in and do something as BT have absolutely no plans to do anything.
Posted by themanstan over 5 years ago
so no talk talk LLU?
Posted by kingbiscit over 5 years ago
We have TalkTalk LLU but speed is less than 1MB for most people, some as low as 0.3.
Posted by AndrueC over 5 years ago
@Spectre:They probably use bits because a 'byte' can have any number of bits. It's only modern convention that says there are 8 bits in a bytes. Quite a few older computer architectures have had a different number.
Posted by AndrueC over 5 years ago
@kingbiscit:It's called being profitable. What should really have happened is Ofcom stepping in and telling VM to create a wholesale product for their cable network in exchange for which BT would be banned from rolling out FTTC in those areas.

Would have been a tricky deal to thrash out but that's what I think would have been best for the country. Without that agreement BT have done what any sensible company would do.
Posted by AndrueC over 5 years ago
Addendum:And the bit-rate probably includes any parity or control bits which would be over and above bytes. So 10 bits per second might only be 1 byte per second.
Posted by fastman over 5 years ago
kingbiscuit -- is youe exchanged enabled and than if it is then the cab serving your area is either not deployed as yet or does not meet commercial criteria
Posted by fastman over 5 years ago
king biscuit how can yo be so sure
Posted by otester over 5 years ago
You vote for a system that encourages lower prices/artificial competition and discourages infrastructure investment, this was inevitable.
Posted by fastman over 5 years ago
otestter 2.5bn investment in infrastructure (open network already due to be completed by 2014
Posted by otester over 5 years ago
@fastman

By whom?
Posted by Spectre_01 over 5 years ago
a quick google:

BT, for example, is investing £2.5bn to deliver
super-fast broadband to Two Thirds of the UK population by 2014. Primarily this investment
has been is in more urban areas. BT is deploying super-fast broadband through Fibre to the
Cabinet (FTTC) and Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) technologies.
Posted by TheArtist over 5 years ago
NOT to rural Lincolnshire homes though, I bet . . . . .
Posted by themanstan over 5 years ago
@Kingsbiscit

have you enquired/checked their website for your local authority on what their plan is for BDUK?

It may be that post-2014 you'll be on plan for some sort of enhanced BB.
Posted by NICK_ADSL_UK over 5 years ago
Bt's overall strategy was to deploy fibre firstly to customers who have competition
And when that's completed they will get round to their other customers by 2020 in which they hope to be finished

It was the same with the BBC upgrading the TV transmitters back in the eighties was only supposed to take 10 years but ended up taking 20
Posted by Somerset over 5 years ago
www.onlincolnshire.org/news/project-news/95
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 5 years ago
@nick_adsl_uk while a wider roll-out is likely, it is not a defined goal of BT.

Currently strategy for beyond the 2/3rds, is a mixture of private/public funding, aka BDUK projects. Then post 2015 there are no firm plans yet.
Posted by TheArtist over 5 years ago
2020? 2020?????? Good grief!! Many of us could be DEAD BY 2020!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Posted by themanstan over 5 years ago
@Nick_ADSL

our village has no VM, we've got FTTC... which is nice!

@The Artist

That's the roll out time for most big european countries!
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 5 years ago
http://www.thinkbroadband.com/news/i/4818.html

EU 2020 targets for those that have not seen them. Also reveals £8 billion available to do it (spread across EU).

UK will have 100 Meg available to 50% this year (cable), and 30Meg to two thirds by 2014. Even without spending any of this money.
Posted by TheArtist over 5 years ago
@themanstan **for most big european countries!** Well then mighty, rich BT should be showing them the way and rolling out way before then! UK NOT such a big player in anything anymore, are we ...
Posted by SimonWindsor over 5 years ago
If BT think they can ignore areas of the country with no competition, they may be in for a shock soon.

The mobile networks are currently investing large sums of money around the country to provide HSDPA+ (21Mbs) and to cater for the forthcoming LTE licenses.

Currently, my ADSL connection is 5Mb, and the only good alternative is H3G HSPA+ service. I have been testing a MiFi dongle and performance looks good.

If(?) I can trust this alternative, then good bye BT.
Posted by themanstan over 5 years ago
@thArtist

I'm guessing you have no comprehension of the amount of money it would take to ramp up the roll-out to the levels that people like yourself would want. And BT is a small player compared to what it was previously and most certainly isn't a rich company. There are no rich telecoms in the UK... OFCOM has seen to that with it's restrictive market practises.

£15-20billion for 95%+ FTTP with 2020 60% roll-out. If you wan to halve that time you are looking at trebling, maybe even quadrupling the costs.
Posted by themanstan over 5 years ago
@Simon

The only issue with that tech is bandwidth, anyone in your area using that will be using the same bandwidth. It won't be an issue at the beginning, but later it'll get congested.
Posted by kingbiscit over 5 years ago
We are on the Warrington Exchange which isn't enabled. The council are going after BDUK funding but its going to take time.

My point is the village isn't rural and it is profitable, I think if BT were to launch Fibre it would have a very very high uptake as there are no VM customers. But because Virgin Media aren't operating here BT are in no rush.
Posted by themanstan over 5 years ago
I see so you're a rural, on a urban exchange that isn't being FTTC'ed. So it's not strictly true that VM don't operate in the area... just your bit+others. VM have coverage in the exchange area and are competeting... I think the other villages you mention are fed by another exchange?
Posted by TheArtist over 5 years ago
@themanstan, Oh I think I DO comprehend the costs involved for(almost full roll-out)and THIS is where BT are too slow in realising WHERE they *could* concentrate their efforts! NO VM, SKY Cable or any cable here, so, if BT had the common sense/forward thinking decision makers to JUMP IN THERE, they in effect could probably make a profit. We rural customers are having to use the above named at a rather higher cost than BT are advertising for the same level of service. cont::
Posted by TheArtist over 5 years ago
continue::
At present, BT can't even GUARANTEE a BB service to this village. Those that CAN avail(somewhat less than 1/2)have approx 1.2Mb connectivity...
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 5 years ago
The sums for BT were like this:

1/3rd of the UK coverage for £2.5bn or
2/3rd of the UK for £2.5bn

Now in around half the 2/3rd there is other networks, but BT is managing to compete reasonably well. So guess which most companies would go for.

Remember that which ever company gets BDUK money has to match fund too.
Posted by themanstan over 5 years ago
@theArtist

So what are the specific benefits businesswise that BT will see by upgrading your area before others? How many lines are there feeding your exchange of which how many are businesses. And of those how many WILL take up the option. Many always say everyone will take it up, but BT are seeing still a ~5% uptake for both urban and rural exchanges.

Bear in mind that if BT get 5% take up in a 25,000 line urban exchange it's better than 20% take up in a 5,000 line rural exhange.
Posted by TheArtist over 5 years ago
@themanstan. Yes - I fully understand your point. True, there aren't that many businesses as such in this village,BUT there are people who work from home! You see...look at the big picture-Govt. wants people off the roads = work from home. NO reasonable BB = use roads!! A very viscous circle. I guess we will just have to stay on that list of sleepy backwater rural areas...
Posted by fastman over 5 years ago
The artist the Openrteach Roll out is not complete and runs till 2014 in terms or deployment some exchanges stll not announced can you PM me your exchange / Village and i take a look at it for you
Posted by themanstan over 5 years ago
But, then the argument has to be if government wants this it need to put a proper cash cow for ISPs to roll-out, not the cash donkey that it's using for BDUK.
The pity about this situation is that most other ISPs aren't prepared to take the risk necessary to roll-out and those that do miscalculate the amount of return needed to keep cash-flow. QED this news item... leaving the monopoly/duopoly situation of BT/VM. Part and parcel of this is OFCOMs drive for cheap BB, so that if a company has a rural solution its margins are paper thin...
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 5 years ago
Hands up who would have paid £50 for an up to 2 Mbps service five years ago if was available?

How many would pay £100 a month for an 10 Meg service now?
Posted by kingbiscit over 5 years ago
I think I payed £50 for a 3MB Telewest service around 7 years ago... I would probably pay upto about £80 a month for a 10MB service at the moment, and I'm not the only one in the village.
Posted by kingbiscit over 5 years ago
@fastman - not sure what info you can get access to, can you see any plans for Warrington Exchange? Nothing officially yet.
Posted by otester over 5 years ago
By discouraging investment I mean in all areas, not just the cherry picked ones.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 5 years ago
@kingbiscit well if you get enough people together, then go to the providers with the pot of money and see if it helps.

Or likely to not be be final 5 to 10% of the UK, i.e. most rural then sit back and wait till 2015 when you should have better services.

Posted by kingbiscit over 5 years ago
@andrew the hard thing is not knowing.. if BT would be a bit more open and say whether we will be given a better service it would make it a lot easier to decide what to do. Even if its not for another 3 years just knowing would help. A 3rd party would probably invest if they knew they had the market for 2+ years but they don't know that.
Posted by creakycopperline over 5 years ago
Your anti-BT we get that, <----- Sorry but that argument is too old to use, find another route.
Posted by Somerset over 5 years ago
kingbiscit - people in your county doing the BDUK bid should know.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 5 years ago
Commercial operators were meant to issue to the local authorities their plans for the next three years. Done in confidence, so authorities can plan their projects, and if you are in the final third (not it does NOT say rural third for a very good reason) then its chase council for them to release details of plans.
Most have not even picked the win of the tender yet
Posted by m0aur over 5 years ago
I am not sure a 500 property exchange is that profitable. My very large Suffolk village has 2,500 properties with vary large amounts of Industry (Cannon Avent to name just one), but we look like being stuck on Market one and copper for ever.
Posted by kingbiscit over 5 years ago
@Somerset - I am in touch with a very senior person in the council who had a top guy at BT on the phone to answer that question and he refused to said it was confidential at this point.
Posted by herdwick over 5 years ago
"My point is the village isn't rural and it is profitable" - if it is then surely you just need to find a provider to do it. Rutland Telecom make a lot of noise, have you tried them ?

Or is the reality that you'll get 200 expressions of interest and then 18 paying customers, as happened to NextGenUs in Cumbria.
Posted by Somerset over 5 years ago
kingbiscuit - are they after BDUK money?
Posted by kingbiscit over 5 years ago
@herdwick - The people here would snap anyones hand of if they could offer them a decent connection. Not many were getting above 1Mb, a lot around 0.3MB. A lot of people work from home, a good number said they would happily pay £50 a month for a better connection.

@Somerset - Warrington Council are going after BDUK money, personally I think BT won't do anything because they know this and want the money.
Posted by herdwick over 5 years ago
" a good number said they would happily pay £50 a month for a better connection " - they'll probably disappear when asked for bank details.

Get them to stump up £300 cheques for starters, or get Rutland to make a proposal and set up a registration scheme http://www.rutlandtelecom.co.uk/registration/
Posted by AndrueC over 5 years ago
@kingbiscuit:People will /say/ anything. What they actually /do/ is a whole other ball game.

Understanding that is all part of running a successful business. Lose site of it and you end up..well..like NextGenUs and FibreStream perhaps.
Posted by chrysalis over 5 years ago
I think registration schemes are poor without a contractual obligation. Even the ones BT did were probably won with fraudelent votes. Tiny exchanges getting to the top of them.
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