Future proofing the UK’s digital infrastructure


KCOM provides essential voice and broadband connectivity services, with a network passing more than 240,000 homes and businesses across the North of England.

Since acquiring the business in 2019 via one of its managed funds, Macquarie Asset Management has supported KCOM to expand the reach of its ultrafast broadband network to communities across the region. 

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Sector Infrastructure
Sub-sector Digital
Invested 2019-Present
Macquarie is supporting a £100 million investment to expand KCOM’s network

Supporting investment in innovation

KCOM is one of the longest established providers of communications services in the UK with a legacy dating back to the opening of Hull’s first telephone exchange in 19041. KCOM has pioneered new technology throughout its long history, establishing Europe’s first all-digital network in 1984 and first “fast internet” service 19981. In 2019, KCOM underlined its track record for innovation with the creation of the UK’s first full fibre city2.

Recognising KCOM’s important role in increasing access to ultrafast, reliable broadband, a fund managed by Macquarie Asset Management led the acquisition and de-listing of the business from the London Stock Exchange in 2019.

In partnership with KCOM’s management team and workforce, Macquarie Asset Management helped set in motion a plan to more than double the company’s investment in fibre-to-the-premises technology3 – supporting KCOM to invest over £100 million in the first phase of its expansion beyond its traditional boundaries of Hull and East Yorkshire.

“By investing to develop and expand our networks we hope to deliver benefits to residents through infrastructure that will also underpin growth and innovation across the region. The investment is a huge vote of confidence in our business by Macquarie, which recognises the great potential this region has to grow and prosper with quality ultrafast broadband.”

Dale Raneberg
Chief Executive Officer, KCOM

KCOM’s fibre network offers internet speeds of up to 1Gbps

Providing essential connectivity

The ambitious expansion programme supported by Macquarie Asset Management has seen KCOM’s Lightstream network so far reach more than 20 new towns and villages in East Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire4.

These tens of thousands of new connections are amongst the 21 per cent of homes in the UK with access to full fibre broadband, benefiting from internet speeds of up to 1Gbps5.

KCOM’s investment in high-capacity digital networks is key to ensuring digital inclusion. This was underlined during the COVID-19 pandemic, which saw customers rely heavily on KCOM’s ultrafast broadband to work, learn, shop, stay connected with family and friends, and be entertained from home. KCOM’s investment to upgrade the network ensured it was able to support a doubling of internet traffic on select days during the UK’s second national lockdown6.

In addition to providing essential connectivity, KCOM’s ultrafast broadband network has the potential to underpin future economic growth and innovation – enabling businesses in the region to participate in the expanding digital economy. This was demonstrated in 2020 when Hull – the centre of KCOM’s fibre-to-the premises network – was recognised as the top destination for investment in the technology sector in the North of England7.

For more information about our infrastructure capabilities.

1KCOM, 2021

2KCOM, 10 October 2021

3KCOM, 8 January 2020

4KCOM, 1 June 2021

5Ofcom, 12 May 2021

6KCOM, 12 November 2020

7Tech Nation, 2021