Liberty Networks Germany’s helloFiber has confirmed its sudden exit from the German fibre optic market and that the company has filed for insolvency.
The decision was based on the “changed macroeconomic conditions”, helloFiber CEO Dr Christian Böing told Broadband TV News, citing inflation, interest rate levels and access to external capital. Further reasons were the rising fibre rollout costs with a shortage of construction capacity and the increasing challenge of attracting communities with suitable characteristics, he added.
The withdrawal follows a “rational consideration of risks,” explained Böing. In contrast to other market players which had already started large-scale fibre deployments, helloFiber has only made “preliminary investments”. “It was the last possibility to press the ‘stop’ button,” he said.
Böing confirmed that the company has filed for insolvency and that a preliminary insolvency administrator has been appointed.
helloFiber is operated by Liberty Networks Germany, a joint venture (JV) between Liberty Global and InfraVia Capital Partners. The company was founded in 2021 to deploy fibre-optic networks across Germany.
[UPDATE, 19:00 CET] Liberty Networks Germany has provided Broadband TV News with the following statement: “Over the last 12 months, Liberty Networks Germany has embarked on a project to assess the opportunities that may exist around building fibre-to-the-home greenfield networks by targeting a small number of under-served municipalities in the country. Having carefully reviewed the results, the partners in the JV have decided against proceeding with the next phase of the project.”