George Cope, president and CEO of national carrier Bell, told shareholders at the company’s annual meeting that broadband is the heart of the organization’s future.
“We’re investing where there is growth,” said Cope, at the company’s annual shareholders meeting held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
[There’s a] significant amount of focus on the broadband side, that is where our capital is being spent, that is the future of this organization.”
The company plans on investing more than $20 billion CAD over the next five years across all of the telecom service provider’s footprints.
Cope also told those present that the company hopes to have approximately 4.5 million businesses and homes covered with fibre internet within that same five-year span.
Cope spoke to the company’s recent launch of its pure fibre internet network in Toronto, stating that the company plans on moving into Greater Toronto Area (GTA), which will introduce roughly 1.33 million businesses and homes to Bell’s fibre internet service.
“[It will cost] well over a billion dollars to make that invest and overlay our networks,” said Cope.
“We’re really rebuilding out network from ground zero.”
Cope added that fibre internet “is a significant investment we are making in the future of the company and what we believe the internet will continue to become.”
He added that Bell is currently testing its wireless network in Mississauga, hoping to soon achieve network speeds of 1Gbps.
“[Our] networks are roughly twice as fast as our largest competitor here,” said Cope.
Cope also revealed that roughly one out every 395 Canadians works for Bell.
A strong wireless quarter for Bell
The company’s shareholders meeting took place shortly after Bell released its first-quarter 2018 earnings report.
Bell announced that it increased its wireless postpaid net additions by 91.4 percent compared to 2017.
Canada’s second-largest network by subscriber-share also reported that it lowered its churn — the loss of customers to other service providers — to 1.13 percent.
The company reported that it currently boasts 9,195,048 wireless customers — a 2.8 percent increase compared to Q1 2017.
Bell’s wired service revenue also grew by 3.6 percent.
“Network leadership continues to drive Bell’s progress in broadband customer additions, service usage and revenue growth as we welcomed approximately 102,000 net new postpaid wireless, internet and IPTV customers in the first quarter of 2018,” said Cope, in a May 3rd, 2018 statement.