13 Jul 2011

Pacific Fibre confirms first customer

1:26 pm on 13 July 2011

The company behind a proposed high-speed trans-Pacific internet cable has signed a $91 million deal which secures its first customer.

Pacific Fibre on Wednesday confirmed crown-owned Research and Education Advanced Network (REANNZ) as its anchor tenant.

The network owns and operates the super-fast internet KAREN link which connects the country's universities and crown research institutes.

Pacific Fibre chief executive Mark Rushworth, says the deal is worth $91 million over four years.

Mr Rushworth says that since the initial agreement with the network was signed in May, other parties have expressed interest in leasing capacity on the Pacific Fibre network.

Mark Rushworth says the undersea cable should be complete by late-2013. The network is expected to cost $US400 million to build.

Pacific Fibre's backers include Trade Me creator Sam Morgan, Warehouse founder Sir Stephen Tindall, and Xero's Rod Drury.