With virtually 100% of premises set to have access to Next Generation Broadband (24Mbps) and 90% to ultrafast broadband, Perth is on the road to becoming one of the best digitally-connected cities in Scotland and the UK, benefiting its residents, businesses and visitors alike.
However, this situation is going to get even better in the very near future. From today (Thursday 27th February 2014), small and medium businesses within the city will be able to apply for broadband connection vouchers to help them cover the connection costs for accessing a better broadband service.
Covering connection costs of between £250 and £3,000, the vouchers are paid to the registered supplier directly. This can cover both fixed solutions, such as ethernet or a leased line; and wireless solutions, like microwave broadband. Businesses only pay for the costs of VAT, any amount over the value of their voucher, and the ongoing subscription cost.
The new scheme is funded by the UK Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) via the Urban Broadband Fund and will close on 31 March 2015. Perth is one of only three Scottish cities to be awarded through this initiative.
The scheme is being launched today at the Let’s Network Perth/Perth College UHI Centre for Enterprise business breakfast event at Perth’s King James VI Business Centre.
Perth & Kinross Council’s Enterprise & Infrastructure Convener, Councillor John Kellas said: “With the launch of the voucher scheme, local businesses can access financial support to bring high speed broadband to their doors and contribute to making Perth a Superconnected City. I would encourage businesses to find out more now and apply right away as this is a time-limited scheme.”
Scottish Government Communications Minister Ed Vaizey said: “We are witnessing a transformation of broadband in the UK which will be instrumental in driving our economic growth. These vouchers will save businesses in Perth thousands of pounds, as well as generating thousands more, and I strongly urge businesses to make the most of this offer to ensure they are properly equipped to compete in today’s digital age.”
Businesses seeking further information about the voucher scheme are advised to go online towww.investinperth.co.uk/broadbandvouchers