Kordia's trans-Tasman cable to be ready in 2011

Dylan Bushell-Embling
06 Jul 2009

New Zealand state-owned operator Kordia is already signing up advance customers for its OptiKor trans-Tasman undersea cable, and expects it to be operational in late 2011.

The OptiKor cable will initially consist of two fiber pairs with total capacity of 1.92Tbps, spokesperson Emma Morrison told TelecomAsia.net. At first the cable will use 10Gbps wavelengths, but will be upgraded to 40Gbps and 100Gbps in the future.

The system will use a POP to POP model, she said. "We\'ve gone beyond the traditional model (cable station to cable station) and will manage the backhaul and POP interconnectivity for customers as part of the OptiKor system."

Kordia CEO Geoff Hunt told ONE News the company expects the cable to cost around NZ$200 million ($126 million).

The company expects to have completed a business case in September, Hunt said, adding that the project is "very viable," and will be funded through customer advances, Kordia equity and bank loans.

"The way we develop it is very much like the way a developer would build a multi-story building. So before we push go on the construction we actually find tenants if you like for the first 70% of the floors. And we\'re in the process of lining the customers up now," he said.

Hunt said he had three broadband connections at his house, with speeds of 6Mbps, 15Mbps and 30Mbps. "Despite the access speed difference there my international experience is the same, regardless of the local speed," because of the high cost of international bandwidth, he said.

Hunt added that the cable will complement the New Zealand government\'s planned national broadband network (NBN), but is a standalone project and does not require government funding.

The rollout will be performed by Australian cable operator Pipe International, Kordia\'s business partner.

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