TELUS reinforcing its commitment to supporting Albertans and the economy by investing $3.5 billion in Alberta in 2020, as part of $16 billion multi-year investment
Network investments will enhance wireless and wireline network capacity to help residents, businesses, and service providers innovate in their delivery of business, health, education and social outcomes throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond
Edmonton, Alberta – Today, TELUS announced it is expediting capital investments from its previously announced $16 billion investment in Alberta to support the province throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. TELUS will bring-forward certain capital investments originally targeted for 2021 into this year as it re-allocates its 2020 capital spend, bringing TELUS’ total investment in network infrastructure and operations in the province in 2020 to approximately $3.5 billion. TELUS will expand its PureFibre and high-speed Internet networks to 282,000 homes and businesses across Alberta, including a specific focus on connecting rural and remote communities that require access to reliable, world-class networks as they adapt to new ways of living and working throughout the pandemic. These investments will directly support 3,500 jobs for Albertans.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we live, work, and connect to one another, and TELUS will continue to support the citizens of Alberta through this unprecedented global health emergency,” said Darren Entwistle, President and CEO of TELUS. “Last fall we committed to investing $16 billion across the province through 2023. In response to the pandemic, we are expediting our investments this year by providing expanded access to our world-leading networks as Albertans are working remotely and our young people are leveraging online education tools, while families are relying on digital connectivity for everything from working at home, to entertainment and to fitness. In addition, we are creating meaningful, family-supporting jobs for Albertans who are facing economic hardship or job losses as a result of the economic downturn. Our networks are not only creating much-needed employment today, but they are also providing the backbone for the jobs of tomorrow and those that have yet to be imagined.”
Throughout 2020 and into 2021, TELUS will invest $950 million to bring PureFibre to 12 more Albertan communities, connecting more than 245,000 homes and businesses to our world-class gigabit-enabled fibre optic network, delivering blazing fast symmetrical Internet speeds. TELUS will upgrade high-speed Internet networks in 50 additional rural communities, bringing residents and businesses faster speeds and greater capacity. In addition to bringing more communities enhanced wireline Internet connectivity, TELUS will invest $85 million to bring 37,000 more rural Albertan households high-speed Internet through enhanced wireless services by the end of 2020. By the end of 2021, 99.3% of all households in Alberta will have high-speed Internet access; 99.7% of the population will be covered by TELUS’ globally-leading 4G LTE network; and 98% of Albertans will have 5G, including 119 rural municipalities and 34 Indigenous communities.
These investments build upon TELUS’ continued commitment to bring world-class wireless and wireline connectivity to communities across the province, providing the technological backbone for our province’s economic strength well into the future. Between 2000 and 2019, TELUS invested more than $49 billion in technology and operations in Alberta, and has given $200 million and volunteered more than 500,000 days to charitable and community organizations since 2000.
Here are more ways TELUS is supporting Albertans at this time:
Waiving home Internet data overage charges through the end of April, so that customers do not need to be concerned about going over Internet data limits as they stay home and stay connected.
Offering flexible payment options for customers who have been financially affected due to COVID-19.
Expanding the TELUS Internet for Good program to Albertan families in-need through a partnership with local School Boards across the province, offering TELUS Internet for Good to students in-need. TELUS’ Internet for Good program provides high speed broadband Internet at home for only $9.95 per month. Previously, eligibility for the program was focused on families that were receiving the maximum Child Care Benefit from the federal government. Now TELUS and the School Boards have partnered to expand and expedite the process of bringing this critical connectivity to all students who need it for learning in the comfort of their home.
Offering businesses 90-day free trial offers on virtual work solutions, including voice and video communication services so remote teams can connect and collaborate no matter where they may be working.
Offering small businesses up to $1,000 of free equipment and professional installation, and 90 days of free TELUS Secure Business or ADT by TELUS services, giving business owners who may have had to close down unexpectedly the peace of mind that their business and inventory is secure.
For the latest information about TELUS’ support during the crisis, visit telus.com/covid19.
While TELUS continues to review the impact to its business of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, TELUS intends to make the investments announced in this media release without exceeding TELUS’ capital expenditure guidance for 2020, released in the fourth quarter of 2019 earnings release dated February 13, 2020.
This news release contains statements about plans, intentions and future events that are forward-looking. These include statements relating to the amounts and areas of focus of TELUS’ planned infrastructure investment spending and the anticipated impact of this spending, including the jobs that this spending will create and the percentage of the population and number of households that will have access to networks by specified dates. By their nature, forward-looking statements require TELUS to make assumptions and predictions and are subject to inherent risks and uncertainties. There is significant risk that the forward-looking statements will not prove to be accurate. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements as a number of factors (such as regulatory decisions and developments, including the outcome of the 3500 MHz and millimetre wave spectrum auctions expected to be held by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada in 2020 and 2021 and other government and regulatory actions or decisions affecting the allocation of spectrum or with respect to certain countries or suppliers; the competitive environment in which we operate; our ability to achieve our targeted operational and financial results; our ability to carry out financing activities; and the still developing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our network, technology, infrastructure, team members, operations, and supply chain) could cause actual capital and operating expenditures and the results of those expenditures to differ materially from the forward-looking statements in this release. Accordingly, this news release and the forward-looking statements made in it are subject to the cautionary note and qualified by the assumptions, qualifications and risk factors referred to in TELUS’ 2019 annual Management’s discussion and analysis, which are incorporated by reference herein, and in other TELUS public disclosure documents and filings with securities commissions in Canada (on SEDAR at sedar.com) and in the United States (on EDGAR at sec.gov). Forward-looking statements describe TELUS’ expectations and are based on our assumptions as at the date of this press release and are subject to change. Except as required by law, TELUS disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise forward-looking statements.
TELUS (TSX: T, NYSE: TU) is a dynamic, world-leading communications and information technology company with $14.7 billion in annual revenue and 15.2 million customer connections spanning wireless, data, IP, voice, television, entertainment, video and security. We leverage our global-leading technology to enable remarkable human outcomes. Our longstanding commitment to putting our customers first fuels every aspect of our business, making us a distinct leader in customer service excellence and loyalty. TELUS Health is Canada's largest healthcare IT provider, and TELUS International delivers the most innovative business process solutions to some of the world’s most established brands.
Driven by our passionate social purpose to connect all Canadians for good, our deeply meaningful and enduring philosophy to give where we live has inspired our team members and retirees to contribute more than $700 million and 1.3 million days of service since 2000. This unprecedented generosity and unparalleled volunteerism have made TELUS the most giving company in the world.
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