Telco Levy

Big news for Lightwire this month with the company featuring in the list of qualifying entities under the 2019/2020 NZ Telco Levy.

What is the Telco Levy?

The NZ government uses the annual levy to pay for telecommunications infrastructure including the relay service for the deaf and hearing-impaired, broadband for rural areas, and improvements to the 111 emergency service.

The levy – about 1% of telecommunications services revenue – is paid by companies, or groups of companies, earning more than $10 million per year from operating a component of a public telecommunications network (fixed or wireless).

Who is new in the list this year?

This year saw two new companies make the list having surpassed $10 million in qualifying revenue the previous financial year, the inclusion of Lightwire and Plan B (which includes the brands ICONZ and Solarix) raised the number of included entities to 12.

Complete details on the entities included in the list can be found here.

What does the Telco Levy mean for Lightwire?

While growth through acquisition is an absolutely legitimate strategy, I do take pride in seeing Lightwire take a place in this list through organic growth. Our hard work and clear strategic focus has seen us grow at more than 30% year on year for the last two financial years, and we have even maintained that momentum since COVID-19 hit the economy.

Being included in the telco levy determination will of course see Lightwire contribute a fairly significant amount to the fund, but given the money is often used to fund work in an area close to our hearts (rural connectivity – that’s where it all started for us), it is a price we are happy to pay.

As always, thanks to all of our clients and partners that continue to help us push forward to bigger and better things.

Brendan Ritchie

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