NBN Co awards millions in contracts19 November, 2011
|By Allison Orr|
The National Broadband Network Company (NBN Co) has signed construction contracts for the Northern Territory and South Australia, the last states and territories to be without agreements.
A joint venture between Lend Lease and Service Stream, called Syntheo, has won the 2-year contract to build the NBN in SA and NT. The NBN Co has already signed agreements with Silcar (a joint venture between Siemens and Thiess) for Queensland; Transfield for Victoria, Syntheo for Western Australia; and Conneq Infrastructure Services for Tasmania. So the NBN Co has now engaged contractors for the entire country and is ready to start rolling it out.
In further news, the NBN Co has awarded equipment contracts worth up to $635 million. The head of the NBN Co, Mike Quigley, has said he wants the company to buy as much locally-made equipment as possible, but also need to make sure it is cost-effective.
Among the successful companies are two Australian owned and operated companies, Madison Technologies and Warren & Brown. However, these were the smallest contracts, worth $60 million and $30 million respectively. The largest contract, worth $310 million, went to Corning Cable Systems.
While the rollout proceeds, the take-up rate for the NBN has had modest beginnings, witha connection rate of about 11 per cent. The take-up rate was expected to be low at first, and people are locked into plans with current providers.