France Tel strikes second fiber share deal

France Telecom yesterday agreed its second rural fiber network sharing deal, as it seeks to keep a lid on the cost of meeting national rollout targets.
The operator penned a deal with SFR to deploy fiber to 9.8 million homes in sparsely populated areas of France, and to purchase wholesale access to the portions of the network operated by its rival within five years. France Telecom will deploy fiber to 7.5 million homes, and SFR the remaining 2.3 million.
France Telecom’s second rural fiber agreement means regulator ARCEP’s goal of covering a minimum of eleven million rural homes with fiber by 2020 will be beaten by almost four million. The incumbent committed to cover five million homes with Iliad Group in July.