We're the UK's digital network business - connecting homes and businesses large and small.
We're the UK's digital network business - connecting homes and businesses large and small. We want to build the best possible network with the highest quality service, and make sure everyone in the UK is connected.
Openreach provides the vital infrastructure that is the foundation of the UK’s vibrant internet economy.
We’re responsible for providing services over the local access network, sometimes referred to as ‘the last mile’. This consists of the copper and fibre connections between our exchanges to homes and businesses. More than 650 service providers use our network to deliver services ranging from telephony, broadband and television for the home, to high-speed data connections for businesses of all sizes.
We’ve invested billions of pounds over the last decade in our network, allowing us to deliver one of the fastest fibre rollouts in the world. As of 31 March 2020 we've made superfast fibre broadband of over 30Mbps available to 28.4 million premises with 14.6 million customers connected to our network via multiple service providers. More than ninety-six per cent of the UK now has access to superfast broadband across all networks.
We’re now working to take the UK from a Superfast to an Ultrafast nation, with plans to make Ultrafast speeds available using Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) and Gfast technologies.
We're extending our FTTP footprint to 4.5m premises by March 2021. But we want to go a lot further - we're aiming to reach 20 million premises by the mid to late 2020s and ultimately the majority of the UK, if we can get the right conditions in place.
How we’re doing
Revenue1 growth was driven by performance in the second half of the year; with growth in higher rental bases in fibre-enabled products3 (driven by commercial offers), up 20%, and Ethernet, up 11%. This was partially offset by price reductions (both the impact of Openreach’s commercial offer of fibre volume discounts, and regulated price reductions), and higher service level guarantee payments due to implementation of auto-compensation.
Operating costs1 were 5% higher primarily driven by higher business rates and higher salary costs as Openreach invested in more colleagues to support FTTP rollout and better service, and pay inflation. These drivers were partly offset by efficiency savings and certain one off items. EBITDA2 was down with revenue growth offset by higher operating costs. Depreciation and amortisation and operating profit movements primarily reflect the impact of IFRS164.
Excluding BDUK gainshare, capital expenditure was up £223m, or 12%, driven by investments in the network (predominately fibre enabled infrastructure) partially offset by efficiency savings.
Normalised free cash flow was down 33% due to higher cash capital expenditure and costs, and timing of working capital.
Looking forward, Openreach is seeing an adverse impact on trading as a result of Covid-19. While Openreach anticipate lower churn, significant reductions in the volume of broadband and ethernet upgrades and provisioning are expected, due to reduced business activity, including fewer new site builds, and restrictions on provisioning activity under current stay-at-home guidelines. Openreach is prioritising service and maintenance to support vulnerable customers.
1 Adjusted (being before specific items).
2 Adjusted (being before specific items, share of post tax profits/losses of associates and joint ventures and net non-interest related finance expense).
3 FTTP, FTTC and Gfast (including Single Order migrations)
Mike was appointed appointed as Openreach chairman in November 2016. Prior to this Mike spent eight years on the board of Ofcom, from 2007 to 2015. He’s previously been chairman of several other public and private companies, and is also carrying out the role for Together Financial Services Ltd, IGas Energy plc and Arran Isle Ltd. He’s held various non-executive roles after spending most of his career at Cable and Wireless, Philips, Motorola and GE.Close
Clive was appointed CEO, Openreach in February 2016. He was formerly CEO, BT Technology, Service & Operations, CEO BT Innovate & Design and before that president, BT Global Services Portfolio & Service Design. He is an ‘invitee’ because the CEO of Openreach cannot be a member of the Executive Committee under the provisions of the Undertakings and Commitments.Close