French Investor Meridiam Establishes Joint Venture with Magenta Telekom for Glass Fiber Expansion in Austria

PeopleOther ♦ Published: August 23, 2022; 17:43 ♦ (Vindobona)

Magenta Telekom and French investor Meridiam have agreed to establish a strategic partnership for Austria's largest private fiber expansion initiative. By 2030, the companies will invest 1 billion Euros in the roll-out of more than 650,000 new high-speed Internet connections for households and businesses.

Stephan Wehrmann (Meridiam Business Development Director DACH), Dominique Leroy (Deutsche Telekom Europe Board Member), Andreas Bierwirth (Magenta Telekom CEO) present Austria's largest private fiber partnership (From l. to r.). / Picture: © Magenta Telekom / Marlena König

The joint venture for the expansion of the Austrian fiber-optic network, in which Meridiam holds a near majority stake, is not to be limited to metropolitan areas but is also to cover rural areas.

According to Magenta, the network rollout is to be carried out without any advance contracts and a minimum number of customers. Magenta also announced competitive rates so that fast Internet, television and digital solutions will be affordable. In a further step, the fiber-optic network will be converted into an open network for other Internet providers. Other telecommunications companies will therefore also be able to use this infrastructure.

Magenta is investing a further EUR 1 billion in its own fixed and mobile network expansion. In total, two billion euros are being invested in the expansion of gigabit-capable Internet lines. According to Magenta, the joint venture with Meridiam will enable the Magenta Gigabit offering to reach a total of 2.5 million (60 percent) of all households and businesses by 2030.

Andreas Bierwirth, CEO of Magenta Telekom, is delighted about the cooperation with Meridiam and says he has found a "strong partner" in the French investor, "who has a great deal of experience in successful cooperation with industry partners and local communities."

Meridiam specializes in the development, financing and long-term management of sustainable public infrastructure in three core areas: sustainable mobility, critical public services and innovative low-carbon solutions. Meridiam has maintained close ties with Austria since 2005 when it first worked with ASFINAG to finance and operate the A5 freeway north of Vienna.

Meridiam says it also has extensive and proven experience in fiber optics outside of Austria. With further investments in Germany, Romania and North America, Meridiam has committed more than €1.7 billion to connect over 1.5 million households worldwide to high-speed Internet.

However, the joint venture between Magenta Telekom and Meridiam still requires approval from the EU Commission. The corresponding competition procedure has already been launched, and completion is expected by the end of 2022.

Magenta Telekom