Exclusive Exclusive: United Internet to Launch Fiber Optic Expansion in Germany

United Internet plans a major expansion of its fiber-optic network in Germany, chief executive Ralph Dommermuth told Handelsblatt in an exclusive interview, marking a direct challenge to the country’s top provider Deutsche Telekom. “In the broadband business, we will increasingly become a network operator,” Mr. Dommermuth said. “We are concentrating on modern fiber-optic networks.“ Starting Saturday, United Internet’s subsidiary 1&1 Versatel will offer small and mid-sized businesses fiber-optic connections for €200 the first year and another €100 in the second. There’s also a €1,960 connection fee. Starting speeds range from 500 megabits to a gigabit per second. Additional speed is also available at anytime, Mr. Dommermuth said. Companies can participate in the offer if they are within in a 500-meter radius of a 1&1 Versatel distribution point. Active in 250 cities, 1&1 Versatel claims to be the second-largest network operator in Germany after Deutsche Telekom. United Internet acquired Versatel in 2014 and renamed it 1&1 Versatel a week ago. Read the full story in Handelsblatt Global Edition Friday. Picture Source: Getty Images