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QCN Fibre continues to drive competition in Queensland – connecting to all 22 NBN PoIs with Ciena

QCN continues to build coverage, capacity, and competition in Queensland. The organisation announced today that it can provide backhaul to all Queensland nbnTM Points of Interface (PoI).

QCN’s initial work program involved connecting its existing fibre network to six regional nbnTM PoIs in Toowoomba, Bundaberg, Rockhampton, Mackay, Townsville, and Cairns.

“Our launch strategy was to activate services to these key regional centres by mid-2020. We have achieved that,” said QCN’s Chief Executive Officer, Derek Merdith. “Now, we continue to improve Coverage, Capacity and Competition throughout Queensland, through connecting to all 22 nbnTM PoIs.”

“As a small and dynamic organisation, we can quickly adapt our strategies to meet our customers’ needs. When we inspected the more than 12,000km of fibre we inherited from our parent companies, Energy Queensland and Powerlink, and considered current market conditions, connecting to all 22 PoIs became both technically achievable and a competitive necessity.”

“Today, there are only two primary backhaul providers to the six regional PoIs. Whilst nbnTM provides some competition, small ISPs must ultimately rely on a limited range of suppliers for backhaul services from the PoI to Brisbane. Regional backhaul currently costs several times that of metropolitan backhaul.”

“QCN’s nbnTM backhaul strategy is critical in supporting local businesses across regional Queensland. Through lowering backhaul prices, our customers should be able to lower the cost of nbnTM business grade services to our regions. Levelling the playing field means that nbnTM Internet Service Providers can compete with the national carriers,” Merdith said.

QCN is rolling out Ciena’s (NYSE: CIEN) Waveserver Ai compact interconnect platform powered with programmable 400G coherent optics across its edge environment. Leveraging its DWDM infrastructure, QCN is also deploying Ciena’s MEF 3.0 certified 5170 Platform.

QCN will offer 1GbE, 10GbE and 100GbE nbnTM backhaul options. QCN are planning to provide VNNI backhaul services to further assist smaller local ISPs scale and grow and minimise the need to invest in expensive infrastructure.

“Ciena enables QCN to transform its network to meet new dynamic requirements for connectivity, especially in remote and rural areas across Queensland,” said Matt Vesperman, Managing Director, Australia & New Zealand, Ciena. “With increased capacity delivered by Ciena, QCN is building a more efficient, reliable and scalable network.”

Until recently, regional Queensland has been challenged with telecommunications costs that are significantly higher than metropolitan charges. This has included limited difference between prices offered by major providers, including nbnTM , and the high cost of backhaul.

nbnTM’s announcement that Enterprise Ethernet pricing will be reduced in some regional areas goes some way to reducing the digital divide, but the reductions are not across the whole of Queensland.

“We can’t resolve nbnTM ’s regional pricing challenge, but we can improve the backhaul commercials for our customers,” said CEO Derek Merdith.

ENDS

For further information please contact:

Emily Kucukalic
+61 403 931 360
emily@bny.com.au

Press Release – 10 october 2020 – QCN continues to drive competition in Queensland