nexfibre, the next generation fibre network operator, has today announced the appointment of Rajiv Datta as its Chief Executive Officer.

nexfibre is a joint venture between Liberty Global, Telefónica and InfraVia Capital Partners. Virgin Media O2, Liberty Global’s UK operating company, is nexfibre’s anchor wholesale tenant and network construction partner.

Datta, who starts his role today, has over 25 years’ experience in the digital infrastructure and fixed telecoms sectors. He has vast experience building and managing large fibre-based networks and services across the US, Europe and Asia, including at Colt Technologies and AboveNet Communications (now Zayo).

Datta’s appointment at nexfibre marks an important step as the business pursues its mission to deliver its network to 5 million premises by 2026, using the latest XGS-PON architecture capable of symmetrical speeds of up to 10 Gbps.

Datta replaces Bernardo Quinn, who was appointed as interim CEO of nexfibre at the start of this year. Quinn will remain as an advisor to the board for the remainder of the year.

Rajiv Datta, CEO of nexfibre, said:

“With a fully-financed plan to invest £4.5 billion and a set of world-class shareholders and partners, nexfibre is incredibly well-positioned to be impactful at a pivotal time in the UK broadband market.

I look forward to working with the team, our shareholders and our partners to execute on our strategy of delivering high-quality broadband capability that provides long-term, sustainable competition, and has a lasting impact on communities across the UK.”

Andrea Salvato, Chairman of nexfibre and Liberty Global Chief Development Officer, said:

“The Board and I are delighted that Rajiv is joining the nexfibre team, and we look forward to working with him and our partners at Virgin Media O2 to create a national scale challenger, boosting wholesale competition, driving consumer choice and providing significant value to the UK economy.

We would like to thank Bernardo Quinn for his commitment and contribution. He has been instrumental in creating the nexfibre organisation, and setting the impressive pace of the programme to date.”

In September, nexfibre, in partnership with Virgin Media O2, reached an agreement to acquire altnet, Upp – an acquisition that will efficiently boost the fibre footprint of nexfibre by 175,000 premises in the East of England.

The all-cash deal sees Virgin Media O2 initially purchase the provider and carry out integration work, but nexfibre will ultimately fund the acquisition through a back-to-back agreement to buy Upp’s network assets.

As a result of the transaction, nexfibre will gain a quality regional fibre network with low overlap of the existing Virgin Media O2 footprint and a build engine that will continue expansion in the region. Through its access to the nexfibre network, Virgin Media O2 will extend the reach of its gigabit connectivity to more homes.

Read the full press release