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Sky is to get a significant network capacity boost after reaching a deal with infrastructure provider Virgin Media Business.

The companies have signed a five-year deal worth around £49 million,which will see Virgin Media Business provide backhaul network capacity.

It will connect around a third of Sky’s unbundled local exchanges with Sky’s own wholly-owned nationwide broadband network.

The core of the network will be put in place by the end of this year, with each connection delivering speeds of up to 10Gbps through Virgin Media Business’ High Capacity Services product.

Extra capacity will be welcome at Sky, particularly as the demands placed on its broadband networks continue to increase.

Not only has the broadband provider continued to increase its customer base in recent quarters, but many customers are consuming more data.

For example, the popularity of Sky Go - the online, on-demand TV service - is increasing the demands placed on Sky's broadband network.

Mohamed Hammady, Director of Sky Network Services at BSkyB, noted that traffic on its network is growing significantly year-on-year.

"This agreement provides us with the capacity we need to keep innovating for customers, and as such are committed to maintaining our high-capacity network," he stated.

Tony Grace, Managing Director of Virgin Media Business, claimed that high capacity connectivity is "vital" in today’s digitally-driven world.

"Whilst we’re concentrating on developing better services for the public in our consumer division, we also believe that our high-capacity network is ideally placed to provide the underlying infrastructure that can help other providers with their backhaul capacity needs," he stated.

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