Eurobites: Gigaclear secures up to £420M in new investment – report

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: BT boss stuck on £1.1 million a year; Deutsche Telekom hooks up with Ivanti; Sparkle lands in Libya.

Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe

June 8, 2023

3 Min Read
Eurobites: Gigaclear secures up to £420M in new investment – report
Eurobites: Gigaclear secures up to £420M in new investment - report
  • UK altnet Gigaclear has secured as much as £420 million (US$523 million) in new investment to accelerate its fiber rollout, according to a Bloomberg report citing unnamed sources (paywall applies). The phased investment, says the report, will be led by Equitix, an infrastructure investor. Gigaclear's owner, Infracapital, will remain the majority shareholder, the report adds.

  • BT CEO Philip Jansen might have to think about canceling his Netflix subscription after it was revealed that his £1.1 million ($1.4 million) salary is to be frozen until he retires from his role at the UK incumbent operator, according to a Sky News report. City sources told Sky News that the decision would be made official in BT's annual report, which is due any day now. Under the terms of Jansen's original contract drawn up when he joined BT in 2019, his salary was up for renewal at the end of this calendar year, says the Sky News report. Earlier this year there were rumors that Jansen could be on his way out anyway, though things have recently gone quiet again on that front.

  • Deutsche Telekom is offering its business customers a new package incorporating security software from Ivanti that automatically detects and closes security gaps – a sort of auto-patching service, if you will. "Dilly-dallying on patching can be costly," warns the operator in its press release, quaintly.UK-based Colt Technology Services says it has completed the deployment of a new dark fiber cable along the Channel Tunnel connecting London to Paris. The tunnel, says Colt, offers the best path to close a key network loop that runs between London, Paris, Brussels and Amsterdam.

  • Sparkle, the international services arm of Telecom Italia, has signed an agreement with LPTIC, Libya's state-owned telco, for the building of new infrastructure connecting multiple landings in Libya to Italy and beyond. The agreement raises the possibility of Sparkle offering LPTIC additional services and rights over BlueMed.

  • A new report from Orange Cyberdefense brings the rather depressing but predictable news that "cyber extortion" activity is on the rise, with the highest volume of incidents ever being recorded in the first quarter of 2023. Manufacturing continues to be the sector hardest hit, though the utilities, education and finance sectors are catching up fast. Geographically speaking, the biggest increase in cyber extortion activity belongs to South East Asia, while Europe and North America have both seen a decrease in victims.

  • Another new report, this one commissioned by BT and carried out by GSMA Intelligence, reveals that the UK is falling behind most of its European peers when it comes to innovation in drone technology, prompting a call for the UK to overhaul the regulatory frameworks governing the use of the, let's face it, sinister flying machines. Tim Hatt, head of consulting at GSMA Intelligence, said: "The challenge for the UK is that, despite huge progress in drone development, regulation has not kept pace and the country therefore scores only 62 out of 100 on overall market readiness, placing it behind European peers and others such as Japan."

  • Ofcom, the UK communications regulator, is keen to reassure anyone listening that its operatives are closely monitoring what we must now call "generative AI." More specifically, its various teams are looking to better understand the opportunities and risks the new technology brings to the communications sector, and what steps might be taken to mitigate those risks. Among the potential generative delights in store, Ofcom points to the possibility of voice clones that could be used to scam people over the phone. So if you're wondering why Aunt Gladys wants your credit card details…

About the Author(s)

Paul Rainford

Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

Paul is based on the Isle of Wight, a rocky outcrop off the English coast that is home only to a colony of technology journalists and several thousand puffins.

He has worked as a writer and copy editor since the age of William Caxton, covering the design industry, D-list celebs, tourism and much, much more.

During the noughties Paul took time out from his page proofs and marker pens to run a small hotel with his other half in the wilds of Exmoor. There he developed a range of skills including carrying cooked breakfasts, lying to unwanted guests and stopping leaks with old towels.

Now back, slightly befuddled, in the world of online journalism, Paul is thoroughly engaged with the modern world, regularly firing up his VHS video recorder and accidentally sending text messages to strangers using a chipped Nokia feature phone.

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