Pacific Fibre goes it alone, looks for vendors to help build submarine cable system

Pacific Fibre is ready to invite vendors to build its Pacific Cable System and has issued an Invitation to Tender to qualified submarine cable network suppliers.

Interested vendors have until mid-May to respond, and Pacific Fibre said that contract negotiations with selected vendors will follow shortly thereafter.

Initially announced last July, the 13,600 km cable system will have landing points in Sydney, Auckland and Los Angeles, and will offer what it claims to be the most direct route between these landing points. Offering 5.12 Tbps over two fiber pairs, the Pacific Fibre Cable system is set on becoming the alternative cable system to the current Southern Cross Cable Network, the dominant submarine cable route connecting into and from New Zealand.

One of the striking changes with the Pacific Fibre cable this year is that they are going to build the cable itself because its Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Hong Kong-based provier Pacnet has expired. Like other submarine cable system consortiums, Pacific Fibre and Pacnet initially were going to own and operate a fiber pair on the system, meaning they would both bear the burden of operating the network and paying for necessary maintenance.

"A joint-build MoU expired earlier this year, freeing us to move ahead more quickly," Mark Rushworth, CEO of Pacific Fibre said in a statement. "We have been assuming a solo-build system for several months now and remain firmly on track to finance and deliver the system in 2013."

For more:
- see Pacific Fibre's blog post

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