Construction of Simi Valley FiberCity® commences
Simi Valley, CA – 17 November 2021 – SiFi Networks, North America’s leading privately owned Telecom company will start construction next month of its latest FiberCity® project, in Simi Valley, California. The network will deliver 10 gigabit enabled speeds to over 47,000 residents and businesses in the city. It will be the third city in California to be in active construction of a SiFi Networks’ FiberCity® network. The first customers will be connected to the network in Summer 2022.
The Simi Valley FiberCity® has been enabled through a funding agreement of $82 million with the Smart City Infrastructure Fund (SCIF). Simi Valley is the fourth US city to benefit from the partnership between SiFi Networks and SCIF. SCIF is funded by APG, one of the world’s largest independent pension fund managers, and managed by Whitehelm Capital, one of the world’s most experienced infrastructure managers.
SCIF was established in November 2018 and targets investments that enable the implementation of a wide range of Smart City infrastructure solutions, allowing cities to more efficiently allocate resources and improve the lived environment. Since its inception, SCIF has successfully committed to four Smart City investments, providing long-term institutional financing to projects that provide next generation open access connectivity and the ability to implement Smart City applications, such as, advanced building management, utility monitoring and smart safety.
Phoebe Smith, Senior Investment Director, Whitehelm Capital said: “We are delighted to be expanding our relationship with SiFi Networks and funding the roll-out of an open access, smart city enabled network across Simi Valley. We share a vision with SiFi Networks to partner with local communities to deliver the next generation of digital infrastructure, improving the efficiency and sustainability of cities. Simi Valley’s FiberCity® network will improve the daily lives of all its citizens, and we are excited to be playing a key role in enabling the project.”
The $82 million network will equip Simi Valley with internet speeds up to 10 Gbps and provide four key benefits to the city. First, it breaks America’s traditional monopoly system when it comes to internet services, as the open access network will provide consumers with a choice of providers. Second, it lays the foundations for Simi Valley to become a Smart City of the future, and also puts the city in good stead to drive future economic growth. Finally, it directly tackles the digital divide by deploying a citywide network that can be connected to every home and business in the city’s footprint.
Ben Bawtree-Jobson, Chief Executive at SiFi Networks, said: “We are delighted to be able to break ground this year, made possible through our fantastic partners Whitehelm, the City of Simi Valley and our passionate internal team and delivery partners. The network will make Simi Valley digitally sustainable; help close the digital divide and make it an even greater place to live, work and play”.
Whitehelm was advised by global law firm Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP on the investment.