Home Industry Deals NBN Co awards contracts worth $1.6b for PON equipment

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NBN Co has awarded contracts for passive optical network equipment worth over $1.6 billion to three suppliers - Australian owned Warren & Brown Technologies and multinationals Corning and Prysmian.

Corning has scored the lion's share of the business with a contract for multiple types of equipment worth up to $1.2 billion over five years. Prysmian, a global manufacturer of telecommunications cabling with manufacturing facilities in Dee Why and Liverpool, NSW, has been awarded an equipment contract worth $300 million over five years and Warren & Brown has scored an equipment contract worth up to $110 million over five years to provide the optical distribution frames and sub-racks that will connect NBN Co's equipment to external cabling.

All three have been given initial purchase orders worth about half their total contract value. NBN Co CEO, Mike Quigley, said: "Part of our purchasing strategy is to make a substantial up front purchase commitment to encourage suppliers to invest in their Australian supply chain ramp-up as we head to volume rollout. They can invest with confidence in plant, equipment, recruitment and training to meet the needs of our national project."

Corning will be the initial supplier of aerial cable, providing selected types of splice closures and will jointly supply feeder cables and drop cables which will connect individual user premises to the fibre network. Corning's existing manufacturing facility in Clayton, Melbourne has already supplied fibre optic cable and other equipment to help build NBN Co's first release sites.

NBN Co said it would "work with Corning who will enhance their Australia-based manufacture and assembly capacity to meet the needs of the NBN rollout."

NBN Co has place an initial purchase order of $400 million with Coring and says that more than half of this contract value will be made in Australia. "Corning will invest in additional cable plant and equipment to manufacture specialised ribbon cable and expand its cable sheathing operations as part of a commitment to manufacture a high proportion of its fibre optic cable for NBN Co in Australia," NBN Co said."

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Stuart Corner

 

Tracking the telecoms industry since 1989, Stuart has been awarded Journalist Of The Year by the Australian Telecommunications Users Group (twice) and by the Service Providers Action Network. In 2010 he received the 'Kester' lifetime achievement award in the Consensus IT Writers Awards and was made a Lifetime Member of the Telecommunications Society of Australia. He was born in the UK, came to Australia in 1980 and has been here ever since.

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