From today (1 October 2018), BT’s Northern Ireland Networks engineering division will be renamed Openreach Northern Ireland. The local fleet of BT vans will gradually be replaced by Openreach branded vehicles and engineers will wear new uniforms and carry Openreach identity cards to introduce themselves to customers.
The engineering division builds and maintains the copper and fibre lines that run from telephone exchanges to the vast majority of local homes and businesses. Most Communications Providers operating in Northern Ireland, including BT, use this open access network to connect Northern Ireland customers to phone, broadband, data and TV services.
The Northern Ireland Networks team already delivers Openreach products and services in Northern Ireland and will continue to focus on providing better, broader and faster connectivity for customers. The use of the Openreach brand, in place of the BT logo, will provide greater clarity for Communications Providers.
The rebranding is in line with voluntary commitments made by BT, following regulator Ofcom’s UK-wide Digital Communications Review in 2017. This builds on changes that the BT Group has already made in Great Britain, including the creation of Openreach Limited with its own independent Board.
Whilst the Northern Ireland Networks team will report into Openreach, it will remain part of BT plc and will maintain its local management team, strategic responsibilities and organisational structure.
Mairead Meyer, Managing Director of the newly-named Openreach Northern Ireland team, said: “This is an exciting and significant day for Northern Ireland Networks and I’ve been talking to my 750-strong team about the great opportunity this gives us.
“The decision to move our reporting line into Openreach is a logical one, and we’ll be working together to achieve our shared vision of driving the country’s digital future. We’re committed to staying at the forefront of broadband innovation and maintaining our strong record for serving customers across Northern Ireland; they will continue to receive the same levels of service.
“Over time our customers will start to see the Openreach brand replace the BT logo on our vehicles and uniforms but our fibre investment and roll-out plans remain unaffected. Superfast broadband coverage in Northern Ireland is over 88% and we’re on track to reach our target of connecting 25% of homes and businesses in Northern Ireland to ultrafast broadband by the end of 2019.”
Over the coming months, Openreach Northern Ireland will run a national campaign, involving outside advertising, to promote the brand change.
There will be no change to how BT’s other business units operate and support their local customers in Northern Ireland, including the Enterprise and Consumer divisions.
BT’s purpose is to use the power of communications to make a better world. It is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in 180 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed-mobile products and services. BT consists of four customer-facing units: Consumer, Enterprise, Global Services and Openreach.
For the year ended 31 March 2018, BT Group’s reported revenue was £23,723m with reported profit before taxation of £2,616m.
British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York.
For more information, visit www.btplc.com
Openreach is Britain’s digital network business.
We’re 30,400 people who connect homes, mobile phone masts, schools, shops, banks, hospitals, libraries, broadcasters, governments and businesses - large and small - to the world.
Our mission is to build the best possible network, with the highest quality service, making sure that everyone in Britain can be connected.
We work on behalf of more than 600 communications providers like SKY, TalkTalk, Vodafone, and BT, and our fibre broadband network is the biggest in the UK, passing more than 27 million premises. We’re also the platform for Britain’s thriving digital economy, which is the largest in the G20.
We’re working hard to give people the speeds they need to run and enjoy their daily lives. Over the last decade, we’ve invested more than £11 billion into our network and we now manage more than 160 million kilometres of cable stretching from Scotland to Cornwall, from Wales to the east coast. And we’re continuing to take that network further - making superfast broadband speeds available to thousands more homes and businesses every week.
Openreach is a wholly owned and independently governed division of the BT Group, and it is a highly regulated business, with more than 90 per cent of our revenues generated from services that are regulated by Ofcom any company can access our products under the same prices, terms and conditions.
For the year ended 31 March 2018, we reported revenues of £5.1bn.
For more information, visit openreach.co.uk