Heuking advises metrofibre on fiberoptic project in the Ruhr metropolis of Essen
A team led by Dr. Oliver von Rosenberg and Dr. Alexander Jüngst, both Partners at Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek’s Cologne office, advised metrofibre GmbH on its ruhrfibre partnership project with the City of Essen and leading globally operating infrastructure investor DIF Capital Partners.
The ruhrfibre partners intend to build out a large-scale passive fiberoptic network in the City of Essen, connecting some 150,000 households as well as businesses, hospitals, and public institutions to high-speed internet. The concept is based on an open network with access for various telecommunications service providers. The joint project company will not operate its own end user business but will lease the expanded infrastructure on a non-discriminatory basis to Internet service providers, which will be able to offer their individual rates. This approach ensures diversity of providers and offerings without resource-intensive and inefficient duplication of infrastructures. ruhrfibre’s network architecture is designed to be future-proof by providing at least one dedicated fiber pair that is used exclusively by each household, thus avoiding congestion at peak times.
The investment volume for the expansion of Essen’s fiberoptic network will be financed exclusively by the private sector, thus without the use of public funds. Via Essener Verkehrs- und Versorgungsgesellschaft mbH (EVV), the City of Essen holds a 25.1% stake in network company ruhrfibre. The main investor in ruhrfibre is DIF Capital Partners, one of the most experienced international investors in infrastructure.
metrofibre, the City of Essen, and DIF Capital Partners officially signed the contracts for their cooperation on November 23, 2022, giving the go-ahead for the area-wide fiber rollout in Essen. Closing will occur after approval by the relevant antitrust authorities.
Counsel to metrofibre GmbH
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek:
Dr. Oliver von Rosenberg, LL.M., (Corporate / M&A),
Dr. Alexander Jüngst (Corporate / M&A), both Lead, both Cologne
Fabian G. Gaffron (Tax), Hamburg
Kerstin Deiters, LL.M., EMBA (Employment), Cologne
Dr. Frederik Wiemer (Antitrust), Hamburg