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Joint Media Release: NBN restructures to better serve regional and remote Australia

To better serve the people and businesses of regional and remote Australia, NBN Co is establishing a new regional business unit encompassing the fixed wireless and satellite networks, as well as other customer facing functions.

The regional business unit will be led by a member of NBN Co’s senior management team who will hold the title of Chief Development Officer, Regional & Remote, and report directly to NBN Co Chief Executive Stephen Rue.

Mr Gavin Williams will be appointed to the role of Chief Development Officer, Regional & Remote. He steps up from his current role at NBN Co as Executive General Manager Products, in which he was instrumental in delivering key regional-focused initiatives including the Sky Muster Plus satellite service.

The announcement coincides with NBN Co’s launch today in Toowoomba Queensland of the Business NBN Satellite Service for medium-to-large business, regional enterprise and government users.

Speaking from the launch event, Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, welcomed NBN Co’s continued commitment to improving connectivity of regional and rural Australians communities.

“Regional Australia is the backbone of our economy, which is why when the Morrison Government came into office in 2013 it prioritised – and has now largely delivered – the rollout of NBN in regional areas,” Minister Fletcher said.

“Gavin Williams’ promotion as Chief Development Officer, Regional & Remote is an important signal to regional and rural communities that NBN Co will continue to improve its services so that all Australians can maximise the immense social and economic benefits that high-speed broadband can provides.”

Minister for Regional Services, Decentralisation and Local Government, the Hon Mark Coulton MP, said the initiative was great news for the regions and also addresses a recommendation from the 2018 Regional Telecommunications Review.

“Today’s announcement delivers on a key recommendation from the Regional Telecommunications Review conducted last year, which was to establish a dedicated unit focused on delivering NBN benefits for regional Australians,” Minister Coulton said.

“By bringing its regionally focussed business areas together, NBN Co is well placed to continue prioritising service delivery and product development to meet the needs of regional consumers and businesses.”

Member for Groom, the Hon Dr John McVeigh MP, also welcomed today’s announcements made in his electorate of Groom, noting that many local businesses are already benefiting from NBN.

“NBN is unlocking new ways of doing business and will drive the increasing use and adoption of smart, internet-enabled technologies across sectors from agriculture and farming to retail, which is good news for local jobs and businesses across the country.”

Today’s launch of NBN Co’s new wholesale Business NBN Satellite Service enables business-grade broadband to be delivered to medium and large enterprises in eligible rural and remote areas, including across the mining and resources, oil and gas, emergency services, forestry, construction, education, agriculture, tourism and health sectors.

Research by Telsyte, commissioned by NBN Co, predicts Australian businesses using satellite services will grow by more than 30 per cent by 2021 and drive the growth in cloud storage, video conference, e-commerce, real-time sensors and monitoring systems – the so-called Internet of Things (IoT).

The Business NBN Satellite Service will include a Virtual ISP (VISP) service which allows for high-data consumption, and an IoT solution which can connect devices such as water pumps and sensors in remote ‘non-addressable’ locations. 

“The Business NBN Satellite Service is a welcome addition to NBN Co’s regional product offering and helps meet the needs of regional, remote and rural based enterprises with large network capacity requirements so they can remain competitive nationally and globally,” Minister Fletcher said.

“NBN is continuing to better meet the needs of regional and rural Australians, including through upgrades to its fixed wireless network as part of an $800 million investment and the recently launched Sky Muster Plus which allows more data for essential internet use,” Minister Coulton said. 

More than 88 percent of Australians are now able to connect to NBN high-speed broadband, with the company remaining on track to complete its build phase next year.

To find out more about the NBN rollout visit: www.nbnco.com.au

More information on the 2018 Regional Telecommunications Review and the Government’s response is available at: www.rtirc.gov.au