ULSTER Bank is providing £50 million in funding to support a major investment by indigenous company Fibrus that will see 330,000 homes and businesses in rural and regional areas connected with full fibre broadband.
The £500m investment in increased connectivity is funded by public and private capital, including Project Stratum, the NI Executive scheme which has provided £197m to boost rural broadband connections.
Ulster Bank is one of six banks providing a total of £220m in support for the multi-million investment.
Ulster Bank is the only Northern Ireland bank involved in the deal, and the joint biggest lender alongside the UK Infrastructure Bank Limited, which is also lending £50m.
Colin Hutchinson, chief financial officer with Fibrus, welcomed the funding. He said: “We’re well aware of the importance of high-speed broadband across Northern Ireland, and with every connection we make, we are making lives better.
“Too many homes and businesses have been left behind by other broadband providers and that is not acceptable. This latest investment helps us to meet our current plan of connecting 330,000 premises and we are already well ahead of schedule.
“Together we’re improving lives, connecting communities, growing the economy, and making Northern Ireland a better place to live, to work and to invest in.
“We are grateful to Ulster Bank and the other lenders for their support.”
Damien Long, Relationship Director at Ulster Bank, said: “We’re really pleased to be supporting the roll out of full fibre broadband to even more homes and businesses.
“This is a strategically important project for Northern Ireland and one that will make a positive impact for the economy and for businesses, homes and communities.”
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