News Release

Wienstrom delivers 10Mbit/s next-generation Ethernet broadband in Vienna using Cisco technology

Viennese Utility selects Cisco Metro Ethernet Solutions portfolio to deliver Ethernet over optical fiber directly to subscribers
Oct 30, 2002

VIENNA, Austria, October 30, 2002 - Cisco Systems today announced that Wienstrom has selected Cisco's Metro Ethernet Switching portfolio to help deliver its Blizznet next-generation broadband service to residential customers in Vienna. Blizznet started as a pilot aiming at 3-5000 homes passed in Vienna. Using a combination of metro optical fiber networks and Cisco technology, Wienstrom is now providing 10Mbit/s Ethernet-based access to consumers. Wienstrom will also participate in the Cisco Powered Network programme in building out the Blizznet network.

As the local Viennese utility company, Wienstrom benefits from access to 'rights of way' under public streets into its customers' premises. Wienstrom is using these rights of way to extend fiber directly to residential customers, over which it is delivering next-generation Ethernet-based broadband access.

"With the Blizznet network we are laying the foundations for true broadband access for Viennese consumers," commented Reinhard Brehmer, CTO of Wienstrom. "Ethernet-based broadband provides simplicity for our customers together with a level of connectivity usually only found in corporate LANs. Cisco's insights into the Metro Ethernet model, together with innovation such as IP multicast convinced us they were the right choice."

Wholly-owned by Wiener Stadtwerke, the Viennese City Government Wiener BildungsNetz is a joint project of the Municipality of Vienna, the local school authority, the Wiener Stadtwerke (Vienna Public Utilities) and private companies.

These fiber optic networks connect up all municipal and governmental institutions and pass through many residential areas to connect up all Viennese primary schools. As a result, this existing network infrastructure is now helping Wienstrom to extend the iBlizz service to consumers and SMBs. Wienstrom also has agreements with the Vienna transport authority and the Vienna heating organisation to lay additional fiber.

"This next-generation broadband network will provide a solid, secure base-line for Internet connectivity in Vienna," added Mark de Simone, VP technology and solutions marketing, EMEA. "In selecting Cisco's Metro Ethernet Switching, Wienstrom is now well placed to be able to deliver advanced services such as Voice over IP, broadcast TV and video on demand over its IP network in the future. Many utility companies in metropolitan areas in EMEA now potentially have access to the key resources needed to make Ethernet over fiber a successful business model."

Wienstrom selected the Cisco Catalyst® 4000 Series switch, and is evaluating the Cisco Catalyst® 4500 Series switches to serve individual apartment blocks, together with the Cisco 7600 Series Internet Router in the aggregation layer of the metro network. Cisco 12000 Series Internet Routers will provide an MPLS-based backbone for the core IP network. For more information on Cisco Metro Solutions visit

Cisco and Wienstrom are also working closely with Cap Gemini Ernst & Young for network management in the Metro network, Cisco Gold Certified Partner Getronics to supply Cisco network equipment and VA TECH SAT for project management.

About Wienstrom

Wienstrom is the largest utility company in Austria. The holding company, Wien Energie consists of Wienstrom, Wiengas and Fernwärme Wien. Wien Energie is responsible for distributing energy to 2 million people living within 2.007 km² of the Vienna region. Customers include more than 1.2 million households and approx. 90,000 companies. The duct and pipe network owned extends more than 31,400 km in total.