Chorus introduces third service provider

Work done by Transfield lessens as new contractor takes over

Telecom’s Chorus network access division has added a third service provider, Visionstream, to its field force operations, as the amount of work done by longtime provider Transfield Services shrinks.

In a statement to the New Zealand Stock Exchange this morning, Chorus announced that it has added Visionstream to current providers Downer EDi Engineering and Transfield.

Visionstream will serve Telecom customers in the Auckland and Northland regions, which were previously served by Transfield and Downer. The move will affect approximately 700 current field staff.

In the statement, Chorus CEO Mark Ratcliffe says “We want to strengthen our field force capabilities and make good on our promise to deliver a world-class network that can support ever-faster, better telecommunications services to more and more customers”.

The new arrangements will enable Chorus to offer customers more flexible service hours, add efficiencies to the allocation of resources at peak loads, and strengthen the focus on quality, according to the statement.

Wellington, previously served by Transfield, will now be served by Downer. Under the new contract, Transfield’s service areas are limited to the central North Island and Upper South Island. Downer EDi will serve the East Coast, lower North Island and lower South Island in addition to Wellington.

Last year, Transfield almost made 170 staff redundant, claiming its then-contract with Telecom, which expired in January, meant it couldn’t make a profit on the work it did for Telecom. The issue was resolved in October, with new terms agreed, and the redundancies didn’t go ahead.

Downer also experienced an issue relating to its former contract with Telecom, with Downer staff protesting outside Telecom headquarters last year, saying a new pay offer from Downer didn’t cover the rate of inflation. Telecom’s response was that it was an issue for Downer, not Telecom.

The three new contracts are for 10-year terms. Visionstream is based in Australia and was originally launched as a subsidiary of Telstra.

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Tags ChorusVisionstreamtelecomDowner EDITransfield Services

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