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Clifford Chance advises on open access optical fiber network project in Rotterdam

31 July 2018

Clifford Chance advises on open access optical fiber network project in Rotterdam

Renewable energy financial advisor Green Giraffe was mandated by L2Fiber Rotterdam to raise equity for their open access optical fiber network in Rotterdam. In July 2018 Highland entered into an exclusive agreement to invest in L2Fiber Rotterdam. The company plans to bring optical fiber access to all 295,000 homes in Rotterdam over the next 5 years. Once fully operational the optical fiber network will reduce energy consumption by 80% compared to the old copper network currently used in Rotterdam, and L2Fiber has pledged that the remaining 20% of energy needs will come from renewable energy sources. Construction of the network has started with first customer connections expected as early as September 2018.

L2Fiber Rotterdam is the only optical fiber network of its size in Europe to be developed exclusively by private investors. The network will be open to all service providers to provide reliable internet at speeds of up to 1 Gbps, high-quality television and telephony to the inhabitants of Rotterdam. The network will use GPON technology, allowing a single fiber line to deliver connectivity to multiple users. This access method will not only reduce network complexity and maintenance requirements, but also save on energy consumption and upgrade costs.

Clifford Chance Amsterdam advised on the equity deal, the fiber network construction contract, all operational telecoms contracts with the network operators and service providers, and data protection matters. This strategically important project (see also media coverage) showcases the fully integrated Projects, Corporate and Tech practice of the office. The Clifford Chance team that advised on the legal and contractual aspects of the development and financing of the project was led by Gregory Crookes and furthermore consisted of Line Poliquin, Liesbeth Buiter, Jaap Tempelman, Hein Tonnaer, Sophie Herweijer, Guido Bergervoet, Arwin Lok, Sanne Blankestijn and Carlijn Tenge.