Internode rebuffs Conroy on POI concerns

Internode has firmly corrected Conroy, noting its concerns around the NBN's POI were voiced loud and clear in two submissions made to the ACCC

Internode has firmly rebuffed claims made by Communications Minister, Senator Stephen Conroy, that the ISP’s concerns around the National Broadband Network (NBN)’s proposed Points of Interconnect (POI) should have been voiced earlier.

At an Inquiry into the role and potential of the NBN, Internode general manager of regulatory and corporate affairs, John Lindsay, said claims made by Conroy on ABC television at the weekend regarding Internode’s lack of submission on the issues of the NBN POIs were unfounded.

“What essentially Internode are complaining about is that the ACCC decision to move from 14 POIs - the NBN's preferred position - to 121 POIs, they believe was not the best decision,” Conroy said. “They didn't actually put in a submission to the ACCC's inquiry on this very matter, but as you would be aware there were many companies who argued the exact opposite to what Internode are arguing.”

According to Internode's Lindsay, the ISP did however make a submission in which it noted the anti-competitive impact of the NBN requiring companies to interconnect with the NBN at a large number of locations nationally.

Lindsay pointed the hearing toward the “extensive” submission made to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) on behalf of the ISP in November last year, in addition to a second submission made on the 1 February this year, following the release of the 121 POI decision.

“This model becomes worse if each access seeker or service provider must provide their own connection to the distant town,” the November submission reads. “There is no economy of scale to be enjoyed and small service providers must either abandon the attempt to service subscribers or acquire a wholesale managed service from a POI more conveniently located.

“The biggest risk to the industry is to entrench a duopoly of retail price competitive service providers and a long tail of uncompetitive providers who slowly, or in fact quickly, implode. The inevitable result would be a rapid increase in retail prices to whatever the market will bear at the lowest access speed the network can provide which would entirely negate the purpose of the NBN.”

Hackett responds to Conroy

During the ABC television interview Conroy further commented on claims made by Internode managing director, Simon Hackett, at the recent CommsDay forum that the NBN Co’s pricing model was “insane” for small ISPs was based only on assumptions.

“Firstly, the critique that Simon Hackett of Internode is using is that a company, a newly establishing company, will want to access all 121 points of interconnect. Now that's an assumption,” Conroy said.

“There's many who would argue that a small start-up company may not want to seek access to all of the 121 sites at the beginning. They would want to grow as a strategy to become a national company.

“So Simon's analysis is based on a number of assumptions. There's nothing wrong with his assumptions, but there are many who would dispute and say that a start-up company wouldn't necessarily try and be a national company on day one.”

Responding to Conroy, Hackett in a statement issued following the NBN hearing said the ISP had “been ringing this bell early and often”.

“Our submissions to the ACCC are on the public record on the ACCC website, so it is rather curious that the Senator is perpetuating this erroneous claim about our conduct in this context,” he said in the statement.

“We seek to correct the record and point out that Internode has been providing public submissions on this and related topics at every step along the process concerned, and it remains of deep concern to us that those warnings are being ignored - not only by the ACCC, but by the Minister being so convinced that this is a new issue that he has not actually bothered to look for evidence of our participation before making his erroneous claims.”

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Tags Simon HackettPOINational Broadband Network (NBN)internodeSenator Stephen ConroyJohn Lindsay

More about ABC NetworksABC NetworksAustralian Competition and Consumer CommissionAustralian Competition and Consumer CommissionetworkInternode

6 Comments

airtime

1

surely a politician hasnt lied and misled someone ???

Terry

2

Why is everyone worried about Conroy"s handling of this broadband policy,he's a computer buff from wayback.He knows what we all need and how to screw it up both in speed, costs and coverage.Remember he knows everything about broadband and does'nt need to be told by those who have far more knowledge on the subject.

Raymond

3

Conroy was a clerk for a union before our money paid him a decent wage in Canberra, I just love watching him implode and self destruct, a joy to behold!

Where are all the Conroy lovers? on here with their keyboard love of NBN and Conroy& Quigley 4 years plus, and we have managed to get to a point of cancelling the build contract!

Well F...... done!

They could not organise a beer in a brewery at Christmas time!

RS

4

Gee look at the FUDsters go, they are finally in their element eh? LOL…!

After months of smooth NBN sailing (sans the oppositions hurdles) there is finally an “inevitable hiccup” and the FUDsters now have something, anything, to grasp onto instead of their typical contradictory BS, lies, FUDged figures and nay-saying!

Go your hardest ladies, you are certainly comical (even more so now, mouth-a-froth) to watch…!

Raymond

5

More FUD news!! the NBN head of construction resigns.

I wonder if the chief NBN lickspittle thinks this is a confidence building move!

Just Imagine a commercial enterprise coming to this point of a $40billion plus project.

Ceo would be gone, CFO gone with him, the local courts would be full of senior executives being charged with all sorts of issues.

Oh, but this is government, they do not have money they are accountable for!

Should any body think in the smallest terms NBN is going well, please say so! please!!

And prove what a dumb a... nobody imbecile you are,like the Aztec's long gone..........and one to go!! soon.

Francis Young

6

The whole premise of the NBN was that anyone should be able to supply a service to any NBN customer for the same wholesale cost, regardless of their geographical location or the last-mile technology that connects them to the NBN.

Senator Conroy has shown admirable persistence and resilience over the NBN, but sometimes he just needs to state the obvious to avoid digging a hole.

The ACCC is already required to review with NBNCo its (misguided) POI count decision by July, Hopefully this will restore the technically optimal plan for redundant POIs in each of the capital cities, giving all RSPs equal access to all of Australia.

That done, most of the extra cost for small operators will be eliminated, especially the extreme marginal cost should they wish to expand to compete in regional Australia.

Simon Hackett's blog post at internode.on.net suggesting changes to the CVC (the NBN wholesale standing charge) also look interesting. Provided they don't compromise NBNCo's cost recovery as data volumes increase, he could have made a very valuable suggestion for competition and customers.

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