Advanced Television

FTTH Council sets out priorities; elects Board Members

June 7, 2021

During its virtual General Assembly, the FTTH Council Europe adopted its work programme and elected new Board members and Work Groups & Committee Chairs.

Whilst fibre deployments and uptake are taking place at an increasingly faster pace in Europe, the EU is making significant progress in meeting its connectivity targets. The entire telecoms and digital ecosystems are rapidly progressing towards a sustainable and more prosperous digital future. The FTTH Council Europe says it intends to be at the forefront of this evolution and thus it commits to implementing topical projects and sets up new committees and working groups that will focus their efforts on promoting investments in fibre infrastructure, the edge of the network, improving gender balance within the telecoms sector, and safeguarding Europe’s green transition.

Update on the State of Fibre

The latest FTTH/B Market Panorama shows that significant progress has been made in the deployment of FTTH/B networks in Europe, as FTTH/B Coverage in EU39 now amounts to more than half of total homes in the region. However, three large historically copper-strong European economies are accounting for almost 60 per cent of homes left to be passed with fibre in the EU27+UK region. This demonstrates that the implementation of the European Electronic Communications Code and in particular of its Very High Capacity Networks provision will be essential to meet the ambitions of “Europe’s Digital Decade” and greater digital empowerment by 2030. With this in mind, the FTTH Council Europe will reveal the FTTH/B market forecasts for 2021 – 2026 at the FTTH Virtual Conference 2021 on September 15th – 16th.

Establishment of new Committees and Working Groups

The FTTH Council Europe Committees are the forum where intelligence is shared amongst fellow members and our positions are shaped. This year, the FTTH Council Europe has significantly enlarged the scope of its work by establishing several new Committees and Working Groups:

  • In-Home Broadband Excellence Committee

This Committee will focus on the edge of the FTTH network and user digital experience enabled by fibre. The objective of this committee is to ensure that all European citizens can maximise the benefits they get from full-fibre connectivity.

  • Investors Committee

Formerly Known as Fibre Business Models Committee, this re-established committee will educate and inform investors about full-fibre telco infrastructures to help them make the best investment decisions. The Committee will release the Guide to Successful Fibre Business Models Involving and Rewarding Private Financing. This document will describe Business Models for rolling out end-to-end fibre networks, identify key financial de-risking features of each Business Model, which enabled private financiers to commit large sums to achieve wide geographic expansion and commercial success.

  • Women in Fibre Working Group

Gender equality is a major subject that is taken very seriously by the FTTH Council Europe. The purpose of this newly established working group led by the FTTH Council Europe’s Board Member Su Guaglianone is to contribute to the general effort to promote gender equality and the role of women as key players of the fibre ecosystem.

  • Sustainability Working Group

Fibre networks are pivotal to the transition to a greener economy, as they use much less energy than legacy and alternative infrastructure and thus can significantly lower emissions produced by the telecom and ICT sector. This new working group led by Gijs Phoelich, General Counsel at Eurofiber, will delve into the issue of the telecom’s sector’s contribution to Europe’s green transition and inform about the crucial role of fibre in safeguarding Europe’s global and sustainable competitiveness.

Board of Directors & Committee Chairs

At the General Assembly, Board Members of the FTTH Council Europe and Committee Chairs were elected. They are all united in working towards the mission of the Council to mission to advance ubiquitous full fibre-based connectivity to the whole of Europe.

The Board of Directors consists of the following nine members in 2021:

Eric Festraets, Nokia, President
Steffen Leiwesmeier, Hamburg Commercial Bank AG, Treasurer
Eric Joyce, ADTRAN
Su Guaglianone, Commscope
Raf Meersman, Comsof
Mike Knott, Corning
Christof Sommerberg, Deutsche Glasfaser
Luigi Gambardella, Open Fiber
Jan Schindler, Prysmian Group

The Working Committee Chairs elected at the General Assembly are:

Eric Joyce, ADTRAN, Chair of the Market Intelligence Committee
Tom Bambury, Fujikura, Chair of the Deployment & Operations Committee
Thomas Miller, Hamburg Commercial Bank AG, Chair of the Investors Committee
Maarten Egmond, Genexis, Chair of the In-Home Broadband Excellence Committee

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