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24 July 2018

THD Haute-Garonne optical fibre PPP contract achieves financial close, France

The THD Haute-Garonne public-private partnership (PPP) project, one of France’s largest ever optical fibre PPP contracts, has reached financial close. Mott MacDonald is lenders’ technical advisor on the scheme.

THD Haute-Garonne aims to deliver a ultra-high-speed broadband network to households, public institutions and businesses in the Haute-Garonne department of the south of France. Once complete, the scheme will connect a minimum of 280,000 users spread across more than 500 cities.

Mott MacDonald helped the scheme successfully achieve financial close by establishing the project risk profile and advising the lenders on potential technical issues with the contract, design, construction schedule and future operation. The consultancy will now monitor design and construction in an ongoing role, verifying that drawdowns are made in accordance with the project’s schedule and identifying any unanticipated technical challenges that could impact the scheme’s progress.

Antoine Bonnafous, Mott MacDonald’s project director, said: “This project allows us to strengthen our optical fibre portfolio and expertise in high-speed broadband networks, at a time when a number of projects are due to be released in both France and Europe over the next few years.”

“We’re delighted to continue our collaborative working relationship with Altitude Infrastructure, the project’s sponsor, on this scheme. Together we have worked on eight optical fibre deployments in France to date, including THD Grand Est which is the biggest fibre optic PPP seen in the country to date,” Antoine added.

Construction of the project is due to be completed in 2023, which will be followed by a 25-year operational period.

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