The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) has selected StarHub's proposal for the Next Generation National Broadband Network Operating Company (Next Gen NBN OpCo) Request For Proposal. Under its proposal, StarHub will establish the OpCo, called Nucleus Connect, to design, build and operate the active infrastructure of the Next Gen NBN.
The Government will provide a grant of up to S$250 million to Nucleus Connect to support its deployment of the infrastructure. This brings the total Government investment in the Next Gen NBN to S$1 billion, together with the earlier announcement of a S$750 million grant for the Next Gen NBN Network Company (NetCo), OpenNet, to design, build and operate the passive infrastructure layer of the network.
|Ms Yong: The Next Gen NBN is a key national infocomm infrastructure that will enhance Singapore's competitiveness in a globalised and digital economy.
Ms Yong Ying-I, Chairman, IDA, said the selection of the OpCo proposal marked another major milestone in the Next Gen NBN project. "The Next Gen NBN is a key national infocomm infrastructure that will enhance Singapore's competitiveness in a globalised and digital economy. It will spur the development of rich and innovative content, applications and services, and bring significant benefits to the various economic sectors such as finance, healthcare and education," she said.
To ensure a vibrant and competitive Next Generation broadband market where businesses and consumers can enjoy innovative services from a variety of Retail Service Providers (RSPs), the NetCo and OpCo Request for Proposals (RFPs) were structured to ensure that downstream operators have Effective Open Access to the Next Gen NBN.
Key to achieving this vision is the policy of requiring the Next Gen NBN NetCo to be structurally separated and for the Next Gen NBN OpCo to be operationally separated from other operators. Nucleus Connect will be a separate legal entity from StarHub, with a different corporate brand, separate premises and an independent board of directors. It will also be operationally separated from all RSPs. With such an industry structure, RSPs will be able to obtain wholesale bandwidth services from Nucleus Connect on a fair and non-discriminatory basis, and offer a wide range of services at competitive prices to end-users. These prices will be regulated by IDA.
For example, Nucleus Connect is expected to offer a wholesale price of S$21 per month for a 100 Mbps residential end-user connection and S$121 for a 1Gbps connection. For non-residential premises, such as offices and schools, Nucleus Connect will offer a wholesale price of S$75 per month for a 100 Mbps connection. Enterprise users who have more demanding requirements can opt for a 1Gbps connection at S$860 per month.
Nucleus Connect will work together with OpenNet on a coordinated nationwide rollout of the network. It is expected to start offering commercial services by the first half of 2010, and be ready to fulfil its Universal Service Obligations of meeting all reasonable requests for service from 2013.
StarHub's proposal was selected from four bids received for the Next Gen NBN OpCo RFP on 5 December 2008. The other bids were from IntelliNet Consortium (Axia NetMedia and Cisco Systems International), MobileOne and Singapore Telecommunications.