‘A Previously Undisclosed Private Investor’


The National Broadband Plan contract being signed by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Minister Richard Bruton and National Broadband Ireland’s David McCourt at St Kevin’s National School, Wicklow last week


In The Sunday Times.

Justine McCarthy reported:

Fianna Fail is demanding the government explain how a previously undisclosed private investor in the €5bn national broadband plan (NBP) became involved in the state’s most expensive infrastructural development, and on what terms, writes Justine McCarthy.

The involvement of a third American investment firm emerged on Tuesday when the contract was signed.

Previously, Leo Varadkar, the taoiseach, and Richard Bruton, the communications minister, had told the Dail that Granahan McCourt, the winning bidder, and Tetrad Corporation, an associated company, were the sole private funders involved.

Oak Hill (OHA (UK) LLP) was named in a Department of the Taoiseach press release issued at a news conference on Tuesday as providing some of the €220m equity and capital investment required of the winning bidder under the terms of the contract. The state is putting up a subsidy of €2.9bn.

No information was given about how much of the €220m Oak Hill is providing.

Questions raised over last-minute ‘undisclosed’ national broadband plan investor (Justine McCarthy, The Sunday Times)

Related: Buffett partner and New York VC fund backing broadband (Adrian Wreckler, Irish Independent, October 2018)


Sponsored Link

14 thoughts on “‘A Previously Undisclosed Private Investor’

  1. Kolmo

    Ugh….actin the micky again with national infrastructure.. with all the delays, false starts, POMA* figures, an inevitable tribunal and general shadyness of the the whole thing – it would have been cheaper and quicker to have a wholly nationalised infrastructure implementation of the project by an existing organisation, the ESB…it would pay for itself in a few years..

    *POMA – Pulled outtamyarse figure, Dublin, 2008.

    1. italia'90

      +178,000 [ of kilometres of fibre optic cables ] just let that number sink in for a few minutes


  2. Hector Ramirez

    Go back there… it’s up to €5bn now? This sounds like one of those bus crash scams…. where everyone tries to pile on after an accident for a big payday.

  3. BS

    Ha hahahahahha feck you paddy. The yanks are coming to take it all! Go back to digging in the muck for potatoes and praying

  4. V

    With all due respect the time to call this out was last September/ October 2018 when Naughten was named and shamed
    That was the opportunity we all had to kick them with Conflict of Interest exposures on the tender
    And it was long before it went to a vote

    And yes that was the time to bring the ESB in to help tidy up the sham tender
    Because once the tete a tetes and lunches were revealed the whole thing was compromised

  5. garrett

    A few Oak Hill directors resigned on 25th September 2019 and a Dr Declan Martin Tiernan was appointed

    The combined cash at bank value for all businesses where DECLAN holds a current appointment equals £1.3m, a combined total current assets value of £7.4m with a total current liabilities of £599.6k and a total current net worth of £6.8m.

    So Oak Hill are broke.

  6. Liam Deliverance

    Oh, so its €5 billion now, great how they can throw around €1 billion just like that, where have those extra costs come from?

    Is there performance provisos in this contract whereby the consortium must meet deadlines for different parts of the project, that the speeds/quality they promised are delivered on and that this project can’t drag on longer than the 7 years and cost, oh, another billion or 2, if that’s not in the contract expect to see 10+ years to deliver.

    For that money you would expect the finest cable, splicing equipment and practices, fibre enclosures, cabinets etc etc. Otherwise expect to be forking forking out another billion in 10 years to replace substandard equipment used, have they thought of that?

    Is there also rules established for what the consumer will have to pay when it is finished in line with EU broadband charges, is there rules to stop OTT increases in the following years and spurious charges. If it does not deliver value for money is it possible that consumers could ignore it and instead go with 5G for example, making our €6 billion broadband network defunct.

    Of course it’s absolute and complete madness paying €7 billion for this network and then handing it over to a private company who could then pick their price in terms of other companies using it, ultimately the consumer will pay, is there protection to prevent this, and how long does it stay in the consortium’s control?

    And finally, this project got the go ahead because Fianna Fail removed their objection to it. Did it even go to a vote in the Dail and are there legal issues related to that? I presume that this is more Confidence and Supply agreement rubbish, something that has not served us in any way as far as I can see. Can we now decide on whether C&S is something that can continue or be used again in the next GE because I guess FF and FG would only be too delighted to use it again. It begs belief how we let them use it in the first place, essentially removing the main opposition voice from the house for the last 4 years. It’s no wonder FG have been able to walk all over us.

    1. Liam Deliverance

      I forgot my last point, how much do we pay Pascal Donohue and others in the Department of Finance as well as the staff in DPER, they recommended to Government not to proceed with this broadband plan in its current form and to re-tender. This advice that cost the taxpayer an arm and a leg is then ignored by Varadkar and the rest, who know relatively fork all about broadband and finance, so what is the point of paying huge money for a finance department and a department for public expenditure if their expertise and advice is ignored?

  7. D

    here can ye just hand the country over to he who shall not be named and give up the charade already.
    make them a throne on the hill of tara and so on

Comments are closed.

Sponsored Link