Proximus has secured a loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB) as it looks to deliver on its goal to bring fibre broadband to 85 percent of Belgian businesses.
The operator will receive €400 million from the bank as part of its plans, announced in December 2016, to spend €3 billion on the technology over ten years.
According to the company’s CFO Sandrine Dufour, the loan will allow the company to lengthen the average length of its debt portfolio and diversify its funding sources.
The provider had connected over 6,000 enterprises as of February 2018, with 24 cities and towns already in the roll-out phase or set to begin it imminently.
Proximus CEO Dominique Leroy said: “Through the EIB loan, we have gained a cost-effective long-term, reliable financing partner for one of our most important strategic projects.”
EIB Director General Jean-Christophe Laloux said: “This investment will significantly enhance access by both residential and business users to ultra-high speed broadband.
“This is key today – for citizens and companies alike – to reap the benefits of the digital single market.”
The EIB’s investment is part of the EU’s Digital Agenda for Europe 2020 strategy, which allows it to support greenfield digital infrastructure projects where it believes they enhance the potential of the European economy.
In July 2017 it provided a €150 million loan to Deutsche Telekom’s Greek subsidiary COSMOTE to expand its broadband network.
In March of the same year it provided €200 million to French telco Iliad to support its FTTH roll-out.