Virgin Media announces landmark figure of 900,000 premises now covered by the broadband provider
Robyn Hamilton
Staff Writer

Virgin Media announces landmark figure of 900,000 premises now covered by the broadband provider with 100,000 more to follow.

Virgin Media, Ireland’s fastest widely available broadband provider announced today that it has officially passed 900,000 premises with its ultrafast fibre broadband network.

Over the past two years, Virgin Media has added 100,000 new homes and businesses to its network map in Ireland, and is on target to reach the 1 million milestone over the next 2 years.

Minister for Communications, Denis Naughten TD made the milestone announcement today with Tony Hanway, CEO of Virgin Media, in Arklow where the landmark 900,000 premises was passed, following Virgin Media’s addition of over 9,000 premises to its network in both Arklow and Wicklow town.

The specific build in Arklow and Wicklow has involved a €10 million local investment in Virgin Media’s high capacity network in the towns including the laying of some 75 kilometers of fibre and the establishment of free public WiFi services in each town.

Building fibre infrastructure with Project Lightning

The announcement forms part of Virgin Media’s Project Lightning, which, according to the provider, is the single biggest private investment in digital infrastructure in Ireland and the UK in more than a decade, delivering ultrafast fibre broadband to an additional 4 million premises across both countries, to reach a total of 17 million homes and businesses. The total investment being made by Virgin Media’s Project Lightning is the equivalent of approximately €3.42 billion over the term of the programme.

Over the past decade, Virgin Media’s parent company, Liberty Global has invested over €1 billion in its Irish operations and next generation network infrastructure. Its current investment programme Project Lightning is delivering a network that is future-proofed to bring a host of new services to homes and businesses in the years ahead including high-quality gigabit internet speeds.

At the Arklow ceremony earlier today, Minister for Communications, Denis Naughten TD said:

“I welcome this significant announcement of 900,000 premises passed by Virgin Media and its continuing commitment to invest even further in Ireland’s high speed broadband infrastructure. Broadband is an essential service for our society and economic growth and Virgin Media has been at the forefront of fibre broadband investments in Ireland. This investment is helping us to address our European digital agenda targets, stimulate healthy competition in the sector while benefiting families, customers and businesses in towns and cities throughout the country.”

Tony Hanway, CEO of Virgin Media said:

“We’re proud to be bringing Ireland’s fastest broadband network to more homes and businesses than ever, with 900,000 premises now on our network map and more to follow over the next two years. Project Lightning is our ongoing commitment to Ireland, connecting towns, cities, consumers and businesses with ultrafast services and enabling digital progress, productivity and economic growth in the process.

“The multi-million euro investment we have made in Arklow and Wicklow town brings Ireland’s fastest broadband network to these two vibrant and growing towns. Households connecting to Virgin Media will benefit from Ireland’s fastest broadband and in-home WiFi, with speeds reaching 360Mbps. There will also be a boost for the local economy as businesses will be able to access speeds of up to 10Gbps or more, meaning they can go about their day-to-day work and grow their enterprises with confidence in having great digital connectivity.”

Also welcoming Virgin Media’s announcement, Frank Curran, Chief Executive, Wicklow County Council, said he was delighted that Arklow had been chosen for such an important statement. “Arklow is on the up after years of unemployment and economic stagnation,” he stated highlighting Virgin Media’s significant investment in County Wicklow, including free public Wi-Fi on Arklow’s Main Street.

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