Alternative Australian broadband provider iiNet has finally signed up to the revised Wholesale Broadband Agreement (WBA) published late last year by NBN Co, the company overseeing the National Broadband Network (NBN) project. As previously reported by CommsUpdate, in January 2014 NBN Co confirmed that 27 wholesale customers had already signed the WBA, including fixed line incumbent Telstra and the country’s largest alternative operator Optus. At the time though iiNet was named as one of the higher-profile hold-outs, with it at that date said to have argued that the revised agreement would leave it vulnerable to paying out compensation to customers for NBN Co’s issues.
iiNet’s chief regulatory officer Steve Dalby said the company would refuse to sign up to the WBA until certain outstanding matters were addressed, in particular those relating to the customer service guarantee (CSG). ‘We won’t sign because we can’t accept that commercial or financial risk that we will be hit with never-ending CSG payments without them [NBN Co] underwriting the costs of those, and we are then getting hit with Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) complaints,’ Mr Dalby was cited as saying.
Now, however, iiNet has confirmed that it did in fact reach a ‘mutually acceptable agreement’ with NBN Co before the March deadline, though the latest report notes that a spokesman for the company would not reveal details of the circumstances behind the settling of the dispute.