Intelia Plans High-Capacity Cable Project Linking Australia and NZ

Intelia announces Te Waipounamu, a $147.8 million cable project, connecting Australia and New Zealand with high capacity.By Ry Crozier, iTnews
January 23, 2024

A new high-capacity submarine link connecting Sydney and Melbourne to Invercargill in New Zealand is being planned at a cost of NZ$160 million ($147.8 million).

The project, called Te Waipounamu – “in reference to the Maori name of the South Island of New Zealand” – is being run by Intelia New Zealand, whose founder is Rémi Galasso.

Galasso previously founded the Hawaiki Cable that linked Australia and New Zealand with the United States.

In a statement on LinkedIn, Galasso said that the Te Waipounamu project is a 3000km system with a total of 16 fibre pairs: four between Australia and New Zealand, and 12 linking Sydney and Melbourne.

The submarine route between the two Australian capital cities presented “an alternative and very competitive [inter-capital] backhauling option … with a total capacity of 35Tbps per fibre pair,” according to the statement.

Director Perrine Dhalluin said that the funding is expected to come from “a mix of equity, debt and capacity contract commitments from major industry players both in Australia and New Zealand”.

Chief technical officer Georges Krebs added that the plan “is to finalise a supplier contract by April 2024 and start in parallel the permitting process in order to target a system commissioning by 2026”.

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