National Rolling Open Market Review September 2022 Request For Information

National Rolling Open Market Review September 2022 Request For Information

1. Introduction

The government’s ambition is to deliver nationwide gigabit-capable broadband as soon as possible. We recognise that there is a need for government intervention in the parts of the country that are not commercially viable, this is why the government has committed £5 billion for the hardest to reach parts of the country, ensuring that all areas of the UK can benefit. This will be spent through a package of coordinated and mutually supportive interventions, collectively known as Project Gigabit.

As part of this, BDUK is developing a procurement approach for funding contracts to suppliers delivering gigabit-capable wholesale infrastructure. This procurement approach will be a successor to the highly successful Superfast broadband programme.

We wish to work collaboratively with industry to maximise efficiency, minimise market distortion and achieve our objectives within a tight time frame. To do this, we must first identify potential IAs which are not currently commercially viable, where no infrastructure exists or is planned to be built within the next three years (however, we are also interested in plans beyond this period, if available).

As of January 2022, we are asking suppliers delivering gigabit-capable infrastructure to submit national data returns on a 4-monthly basis (January, May and September) to provide detailed build plans at premises level. The purpose of this National Rolling Open Market Review (NR OMR) is to ensure that we have the most up to date information about suppliers’ existing and planned build – in particular commercial build – over the next 3-year period with supplier submissions being used to inform eligibility across Project Gigabit.

This will support better strategic planning and prioritisation of Project Gigabit Procurement intervention areas, streamline the current local Open Market Review (OMR) process and minimise the risk of BDUK intervening in an area that would disrupt a supplier’s existing commercial plans. Data collected from the NR OMR will also be used to inform GigaHubs and UK Gigabit Voucher eligibility as well as support the development of other potential BDUK interventions.

Once the credibility of suppliers’ commercial build plans has been assessed through an Open Market Review and validated through the subsequent Public Review (PR) stage, the premises identified by BDUK as eligible for subsidy will be grouped into appropriately sized IAs to ensure that the right areas are targeted for government investment.

We invite suppliers to provide us with information about their infrastructure within the UK. We intend to review this data together with data available through Ofcom’s Connected Nations publication to allow us to carry out an assessment of existing and planned broadband connectivity.

Forming the IAs will include taking information learned from Ofcom’s Connected Nations data; publicly available supplier information about build and planned build; feedback from potential suppliers about commercial attractiveness; information that we can gather through this NR OMR and any forthcoming PRs that we may launch within the UK.

Through this NR OMR and working with suppliers, we hope to gradually build a comprehensive dataset across the UK. BDUK will use this information to inform the size and scale of the IAs. The IAs will be issued to the market so that suppliers can bid for funding to support delivery to those areas.

These IAs have been broken down into three types of IAs which will deliver subsidised gigabit networks, consisting of Regional, Cross – Regional and Local Supplier areas.

The January 2022 NR OMR was used as a ‘soft launch’ of a new process and as such, we invited a small number of suppliers to participate in this collection. For the May and September 2022 NR OMR we are continuing to extend the invitation to more suppliers with the intention of including all suppliers over the coming months.

As part of the NR OMR we will ask participating suppliers to provide supporting evidence with their submission in the same way as they do for any other OMR, ie at the same time as their data submission.

PRs are a separate process that are not affected by the NR OMR and will continue as normal.

2. Why should suppliers participate in this National Rolling Open Market Review?

Our goal is to ensure we target the parts of the country that need government support first. By working together, we will help to maximise the use of public subsidy to help provide ever faster, better connectivity across all parts of the UK. This will help us to identify areas which will be left out because they are not commercially viable, thereby bringing significant benefits to the UK economy.

We actively encourage responses to this NR OMR with any existing network coverage, or planned infrastructure build within the next three years. This means we can ensure we target the right areas for public subsidy, and avoid over-building viable, commercially planned infrastructure.

Please provide us with your latest dataset, and an update to your supporting evidence, every 4 months. We are aware that deployment plans change frequently and we require the latest data to evaluate your coverage accurately.

Unless an updated submission is received, BDUK will use your national submission for all subsequent Open Market Reviews or Public Reviews (PRs) which are launched in the lots that you cover. You will be issued with an outcome notification letter whenever your submission has been used which will confirm how your data has been treated across the relevant lots in each release.

3. Geographical scope

This Request for Information (RFI) will allow us to identify potential IAs for government subsidy. This NR OMR RFI is concerned with the following areas as shown below (and in the map):

  • Central East England
  • North West England
  • Central West England
  • Northern Ireland
  • South East England
  • North East England
  • South West England
  • Scotland
  • Wales
National Rolling Open Market Review September 2022 Request For Information

BDUK will supply blank templates for the NR OMR (as outlined in Annex A), showing the UPRNs across the nation that we consider relevant to the NR OMR process. For convenience, these have been divided into ten separate templates.[footnote 1]

These UPRNs have been sourced from Address Base Premium Epoch 95, from Ordnance Survey published August 2022.

To access this information you will need to sign an Ordnance Survey Public Sector Contractor Agreement Licence. This is available as an attachment within the project gigabit supporting documents section.

We also require suppliers to sign a Non Disclosure Agreement (NDA) with BDUK, if this is not already in place, please email [email protected] to initiate this process.

For more information about current coverage in the above areas, please refer to the Ofcom Connected Nations report, which contains more information about connectivity, including speed data. BDUK will endeavour to publish on a rolling basis the coverage information which can be found at this web link: Digital Connectivity Portal.

3.1 Purpose of this National Rolling Open Market Review Request For Information

We are launching this NR OMR Request for Information RFI to establish existing and planned coverage of broadband services with the aforementioned geographic areas over the next three years. We seek responses from broadband infrastructure suppliers that operate, or are planning to operate within the geography over the next three years.

We consider that early market research is an important part of our market engagement to shape public investment plans. The results of the NR OMR will assist us with understanding the broadband infrastructure (whether NGA, ultrafast or gigabit-capable) already in place and where there are plans for investment in such infrastructure in the forthcoming three years. This RFI will enable us to make a significant step in the design of the areas to be targeted by BDUK interventions. This NR OMR process will be used by BDUK in any forthcoming formal PRs (known as the Public Consultation, under the Superfast Programme, a former broadband coverage subsidy intervention). BDUK applies a best practice approach that includes an OMR (this NR OMR, and/or a ‘local’ OMR) and a PR. Supplier submissions will be used to inform eligibility across Project Gigabit.

We will request and then evaluate the suppliers’ responses. During the evaluation exercise, we may engage with suppliers further to discuss and confirm their coverage claims. Following this, we will be able to determine the eligibility of the premises for government subsidy. Below shows a summary of how the NR OMR process works.

3.2 National Rolling Open Market Review Process

  1. BDUK issues a Request for Information.

  2. Supplier prepares OMR response.

  3. BDUK responds to any clarification questions.

  4. Supplier submits coverage data and supporting evidence.

  5. BDUK evaluates supplier OMR response.

  6. BDUK determines premises eligibility, potentially asking clarification questions of suppliers.

  7. OMR process concludes.

We will then conduct PRs in specific geographic areas to validate the results of the NR OMR and any ‘local’ OMRs we may conduct, on the eligibility of the premises for subsidy. PRs will take place over the period of at least one month, and once concluded will confirm the eligibility of the premises for procurement(s). The full details of these procurements will follow the conclusion of this OMR and PR. See further details on this process

4. Key eligibility requirements for subsidy

The outcome of this NR OMR may be consolidated with any discrete/local OMRs and any forthcoming PR will be shown in terms of White, Grey, Black and Under Review premises. We will only subsidise build to premises which have been designated as White.

  • White – indicates premises with no gigabit network infrastructure and none is likely to be developed within 3 years. Annex C provides information on the technology ‘qualifying’ as gigabit-capable
  • Black – indicates premises with two or more qualifying gigabit infrastructures from different suppliers being available, or will be deployed in the coming 3 years
  • Grey – indicates premises with a single qualifying gigabit infrastructure from a single supplier is available or is to be deployed within the coming 3 years
  • Under Review – indicates premises where suppliers have reported current or planned commercial broadband coverage, but where claimed current gigabit coverage has not been verified, or, in respect of planned build, where evaluators are confident that gigabit infrastructure will be delivered, but some risks to delivery remain, or there are some gaps in evidence.

Premises categorised as Under Review will be subject to continued monitoring and verification of supplier plans within the three-year period by BDUK. BDUK may request commitment from the supplier that significant progress is made within three years. In the event that these commercial plans fall away, these premises will be mapped as eligible and form part of the proposed intervention area and so eligible for intervention via this aid measure. We request that suppliers inform us regarding all plans, including plans beyond the initial three-year period.

BDUK classifies premises on the basis of their existing or planned broadband infrastructure, as set out in Annexes B and C. The NR OMR data analysis of suppliers’ broadband coverage claims is undertaken at UPRN (premises) level.

Once the submission period has closed, if additional information or clarifications are required, BDUK will raise clarification questions with suppliers.

5. Treatment Of BDUK Vouchers Data

Coverage claims received from suppliers utilising Vouchers funding will be evaluated in accordance with the Subsidy Control evaluation process. This means that suppliers’ claims will be assessed against the technology solution being gigabit-capable for existing infrastructure.

Typically, Vouchers premises will be categorised as follows:

  • Projects, or before Voucher is issued – “White” (BDUK data assessment indicates a very low chance that these UPRNs will be built to)
  • Voucher issued – “Under Review” (around 4% chance UPRN will not be delivered)
  • Voucher claimed – “Grey” (should be gigabit-connected)

Further information on the Subsidy Control evaluation process, including BDUK’s treatment of other BDUK intervention data (Superfast, LFFN, RGC, Gigahubs) can be found within the Open Market Review and Public Review Subsidy Control Classification Guidance

6. Commercial process

BDUK will budget an appropriate amount of public funding from the Project Gigabit Programme for each intervention, at the procurement stage. The budget will be specified within the relevant procurement documentation following the PR. Details of any restrictions on the use of public subsidy will be explained in the tender documentation. It is BDUK’s intention to procure gigabit-capable solutions – those capable of achieving a minimum of 1Gbps download speed – for the identified areas in scope for gigabit-capable deployment.

Suppliers have the opportunity, during the OMR and PR processes, to share with BDUK any firm and credible investment plans that may mean that public subsidy will not be warranted. It will be important for this OMR and the PR to establish these plans. Please see Annex B for guidance on how supporting evidence is used to assess coverage.

Please note that final Project Gigabit Intervention Areas may be a subset of the premises classified as White in the subsidy assessment and will be subject to BDUK overlays, including other active/planned BDUK interventions (eg Superfast).

7. The role of local bodies

BDUK will work with the relevant local bodies to answer questions, evaluate supplier responses, assess data accuracy, support the build phase and engage with the local community. Sharing the premises data set out within each location and intervention areas, during the NR OMR, will help us gain further confidence on eligibility for Project Gigabit interventions.

BDUK will maintain a central dataset and will work with authorities to assess and review the data in the areas relevant to the respective local body and intervention areas. BDUK will be responsible for the data and local bodies are required to sign a non-disclosure agreement prior to gaining access to the data.

This Request for Information is being carried out independently of any activities that local bodies may be undertaking, for example, under the National Broadband Scheme 2016 known as the Superfast Programme.

8. Making a data response

To submit a data response, please follow the steps below, as well as referring to the guidance provided in Annex A:

  • Sign the Public Sector Geospatial Agreement (PSGA) Contractor Licence Agreement, which will be required before downloading the data. Please return this, as soon as possible to [email protected] If you have already signed a PSGA agreement with BDUK through previous OMRs / PRs, there is no need to send this through again

  • Once you have done this, we will provide you with login details to our portal where you will be able to download the response templates

  • You may seek clarification, on making a data response, at any time from 5 September 2022 to 17 October 2022. Please send these questions to us at [email protected]

  • You should make your data submission to us via the portal. Please upload the data response template and any further supporting evidence you feel you should send

  • Please do not assume that we will use a previous submission for this RFI. If you wish for a previous National Rolling data submission to be treated as your return for this RFI, please get in touch to confirm this, in writing

  • Please include all current and planned premises coverage, including premises that are outside of the premises base provided in the template files in Annex A.

  • Please provide any existing or planned infrastructure you have gained with assistance from government subsidy for example, Vouchers, Superfast (NBS 2012 or NBS 2016) and Hubs (Local Full Fibre Networks and Rural Gigabit Connectivity Programmes)

Please note that the data you provide in your response will be treated as commercially confidential, albeit that it may be necessary to share some/all of your response data with our professional advisors and/or local bodies, Ofcom and BEIS Subsidy Control Branch. We may use this information to define IAs (only) following PR.

Please ensure that you engage with us as soon as possible to confirm whether you would require BDUK to put in place a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) enabling us to share data between each other as part of this NR OMR process. If you already have a signed NDA in place with BDUK through previous processes, this may not be required again.

It should also be noted that it is a requirement to use this information to produce maps to define White, Grey, Black and Under Review areas for gigabit-capable broadband. However, the published maps will show the aggregated White, Grey, Black and Under Review broadband areas, not the data provided on a per-operator basis. The final maps and UPRNs that will be used for procurement purposes will be published shortly after the conclusion of a PR and once approved by the National Competence Centre.

If you have any questions about any of the above, please contact [email protected]

9. Submission requirements

Responses to this NR OMR RFI must include the following:

  1. A data submission that should cover your current and planned premise coverage (ie premises served by your network, or planned to be served by your network) at UPRN levelas per the format outlined in Annex A:

    • Please include all current and planned premises coverage, including premises that are outside of the geographic areas, and/or outside of the premises base provided in the template files
    • Please include any existing or planned infrastructure you have gained with assistance from government subsidy for example, Vouchers, Superfast (NBS 2012 or NBS 2016) and Hubs (Local Full Fibre Newtworks and Rural Gigabit Connectivity Programmes).
    •Additional guidance can be provided to suppliers if required, please contact [email protected] for support.

  2. An up to date supporting evidence pack.

  3. BDUK would also like to hear from operators their views as to the types of wholesale access products they would like to see offered on any newly created subsidised network infrastructure. This information may inform the intervention design. Please note that we are not obliged to include these products in the invitation to tender.

Please note that where your coverage claims are for gigabit-capable networks, then your response detailing your proposed network design and architecture must consider the technical definition as outlined in Annex C.

9.1 Evidence to demonstrate how planned investments are credible

There are three essential areas against which BDUK will evaluate your planned coverage claims to ensure the overall credibility of your planned investment. Our assessment will be based on the suite of evidence you provide in the supporting evidence pack and will include:

  • technology – whether the technology you have deployed and intend to deploy is gigabit-capable and meets the technical criteria as outlined in Annex C: Technical definition

  • deliverability – whether your deployment plans are in line with the phases/premises passed outlined in your business plan, with the key build stages and processes outlined

  • commercial/financial viability – whether you have viable commercial plans such as sufficient access to capital and whether the drawdown of your funds aligns with your deployment plan and build programme

The information you provide should be consistent across these elements to support a joined-up evaluation of your responses.

In assessing whether planned investments are credible viable, BDUK may:

  • review the business plans and calendar deployment plans to ensure these are consistent and in sufficient detail for each phase of the planned build.

  • require evidence to demonstrate credible and plausible character of the planned investment which as a minimum should include a business plan, a detailed calendar deployment plan, evidence of adequate financing, consideration of risk and proposed technical architecture.

  • ensure calendar deployment plans include the key build stages and when suppliers expect to undertake significant activities within their build programme such as design, surveying, acquisition, network build, network installation etc or the key processes involved in your build plan approach for design phase, survey phase, road notices/ wayleaves etc.

  • test that funding availability is sufficient for each phase of the planned build and that the capital allocated for the specific OMR area is sufficient and is consistent with the deployment plan.

  • review the terms of any financing arrangements and any dependencies and assumptions associated with the financing including repayment terms, KPIs, expected ROI, dependency on public subsidy such as GBVS vouchers or regional subsidy schemes.

  • ensure that the network design and dimensioning information provided is in line with the projections made in the Business Plan regarding customer connections and growth expectations.

Further information is included in Annex B and the supporting evidence pack.

If your future network plans are entirely reliant on BDUK subsidy/interventions (eg Vouchers) it may not be necessary to provide a complete set of supporting evidence alongside your data submission. As set out within the Subsidy Control classification guidance, planned voucher build will be classified as White unless a voucher has been ‘issued’ or ‘claimed’ in which case it will be classified as Under Review and Grey respectively. Classification of voucher build will be based on BDUK held data of voucher status.

In all cases please do provide us with a full data submission.

10. Date for return

Please submit responses to this Open Market Review by the closing date of 5pm on 17 October 2022. Any discrete PRs launched following this NR OMR will allow suppliers, members of the public and other stakeholders the opportunity to provide their input to the proposed IAs in question.

Thank you.

BDUK Case Management Team

11. Annex A: Data submission format

11.1 Introduction

BDUK requires certain fields of data for each pertinent UK address as identified by the Unique Property Reference Number (UPRN) in order to monitor the current and future delivery of Gigabit broadband capable services. This is done by requesting data on current and future connections from relevant suppliers. The below describes the format of the BDUK request file and how to format the data to return to us. If you require any additional support, guidance or clarification with this, please get in touch with us at [email protected]

11.2 File formats

We have supplied ten blank regional templates showing the UPRNs across the nation that we consider relevant to the OMR/PR process. The purpose of providing this information to you is to present the UPRNs that we recognise and the format of the submission you should provide to us. Your response does not need to align with this baseline however any premises in your submission which do not align will be filtered out in analysis. If you are likely to re-use your submission for future OMR/PRs we would actively encourage you not to align with our baseline as it may change over time.

These UPRNs have been sourced from Address Base Premium Epoch 95, from Ordnance Survey published August 2022.
Please do not pre-filter your data based on the template files, instead please provide us with your entire UPRN dataset.

If you are using the template files as the starting point for your return, please remove any UPRN rows which are not part of your current or planned network.

The information that we provide against each property/premises is as follows:

Field Name Description Format
strUPRN The UPRN (see below) prepended with “STR”, this is a mitigation against certain spreadsheet tools treating the UPRN as a large number and removing significant digits Text
UPRN The unique property reference number Number
Single_Line_Address Comma delimited single line address (eg 1, Acacia Avenue, Anytown) Text
Postcode Standard postcode Text
Local_Authority_District The local authority district Text
Longitude Longitude in the decimal degree format Number
Latitude Latitude in the decimal degree format Number

The information that we ask for against each property/premises is as follows:

Field Name Description Format
Current_Technology (Complete this field for UPRNs which are RFS only)

The technology you use for supplying that particular premises, examples of this could be ADSL, FTTP, FTTC etc

Text
Current_Max_Download_ Speed (Complete this field for all UPRNs with ‘Current_Technology’)

The maximum download speed in Mbit/s that you are able to supply to this property.

Number
Current_Max_Upload_Speed (Complete this field for all UPRNs with ‘Current_Technology’)

The maximum upload speed in Mbit/s that you are able to supply to this property.

Number
Future_Technology (Complete this field for UPRNs that you plan to connect only)

The technology you intend to use for supplying that particular premises, examples of this could be FTTP, FTTC etc

Text
Future_Max_Download_Speed (Complete this field for all UPRNs with ‘Future_Technology’)

The maximum download speed in Mbit/s that you intend to be able to supply to this property.

Number
Future_Max_Upload_Speed (Complete this field for all UPRNs with ‘Future_Technology’)

The maximum upload speed in Mbit/s that you intend to be able to supply to this property.

Number
Date_of_Future_Rollout (Complete this field for all UPRNs with ‘Future_Technology’)

This should be the Ready for Service date for the premises. The date at which RSPs can offer products or services to the individual premise. This should not be the date that build commences.

DD/MM/YYYY
Delivery_Phase (Complete this field for all UPRNs with ‘Future_Technology’)

The planned phase for any future rollout which each UPRN shall form part of, eg Phase 1/Phase 2 etc, Tranche 1/Tranche 2 etc, Region 1/Region 2 etc

These phases should align to your Calendar Deployment Plan and should correlate and be consistent with the information contained in your Supporting evidence pack. Please include context regarding each delivery phase in your supporting evidence such as the risks and dependencies for the successful delivery of each phase and the mitigations/arrangements that you have in place to address these risks; a description regarding your resourcing plan for each phase; key milestones within each phase and the subsequent activities/timeframes to achieve RFS.

Text
Design_Stage (Complete this field for all UPRNs with ‘Current_Technology’ or ‘Future_Technology’)

The current phase of your future coverage such as:

‘1. Awaiting HLD’ – High Level Design (HLD) has not yet been completed.

‘2. HLD complete’ – HLD/area level plan has been completed. However, Low Level Design (LLD) work has not yet been completed or is in progress.

‘3. LLD complete’ – Low Level Design (LLD) and survey work has been completed, however, subcontractors/build partners, or in-house resources to complete the network build, are still to be appointed.

‘4. Build team appointed’ – Subcontractors / build partners or if applicable in-house civil resource has been appointed and commissioned to start the network build in accordance with the LLDs. All the necessary planning, acquisitions and wayleave agreements are finalised to allow the network to be constructed.

‘5. In build’ – Network build is in progress, however premises are not yet able to take up a service.

‘6. RFS’ – Network build and end-to-end testing is complete and premises are Ready for Service (RFS) ie RSPs are able to offer products or services to the individual premise

Note: If you are intending to use different descriptions to those above, please include full explanations of each field entry in your supporting evidence submission to accompany this data submission.

Text
Funding_Stage (Complete this field for all UPRNs with ‘Future_Technology’)

The current status of funding allocated to the UPRN. If your funding allocation is linked to your Delivery_Phase please reflect that in your data and explain that in your supporting evidence. Please be aware that BDUK’s assessment of supplier returns will be based, in full, on the evidence requested in Annex B. As such, we cannot guarantee that we will accept how suppliers have categorised the status of their funding position. Field entries to use:

‘1. No funding planned or committed’ – While you may be planning to deliver to this UPRN, the funding is not yet in place to do so and/or you are seeking funding.

‘2. Funding planned, but not committed’ – You have in principle funding agreed to deliver to this UPRN, but the funding is not immediately available, requires further decisions such as Board approval, or is dependent on (for example) performance metrics.

‘3. Funding committed’ – Funding has been identified and has been allocated to delivery of this UPRN. There are no further conditions around drawing down or using funding and the funding is ring-fenced solely for the delivery of associated premises. This should be explained clearly in your financial plan, which should be provided as part of your supporting evidence plan

Text
Public_Intervention (Complete this field for all UPRNs with ‘Current_Technology’ or ‘Future_Technology’)

Please define if coverage has been or is planned to be connected using a public intervention. ‘Yes’ will be marked when a premises is dependent on funding from BDUK’s Vouchers, Superfast, LFFN or RGC Programmes, or when an existing service was built with funding from one of those Programmes. Other public interventions (such as Local Authority schemes) should also be acknowledged and marked as a ‘Yes’ here. Further explanation should be provided in your supporting evidence pack.

An entry of ‘No’ would indicate that the premises is planned to be built, or has already been built, entirely through commercial funding with no dependency on public intervention. Evidence of this funding should be provided in your supporting evidence.

Yes / No

11.3 Additional columns

Aside from the standard columns above, you may wish to add additional columns to provide additional information about your network. If this is the case, please add additional column(s) at the end of your data return and provide clear explanation in your supporting evidence of what these columns indicate.

12. Annex B: Supporting evidence

In order to substantiate your existing and planned commercial coverage we require a complete and up to date supporting evidence pack alongside your submission.

There are three essential areas against which BDUK will evaluate to ensure overall viability of your planned investment;

technology – whether the technology you have deployed and intend to deploy is gigabit-capable and meets the technical criteria as outlined in Annex C: Technical definition

deliverability – whether your deployment plans are in line with the phases/premises passed outlined in your business plan, with the key build stages and processes outlined

commercial/financial viability – whether you have credible commercial plans such as sufficient access to capital and whether the drawdown of your funds aligns with your deployment plan and build programme

Please note – we do not expect you to produce additional tailored material to support your response. We believe you should have sufficient documentation readily available that can enable us to make a determination of credibility. Suppliers should provide supporting evidence in two ways:

  1. A completed supporting evidence pack (template provided by BDUK) containing responses to each evidence request. Your responses may refer us directly to supplementary documentation (described below).

  2. Supplementary documentation to substantiate your coverage claims such as network diagrams, business plan, deployment plans etc.

The supporting evidence you provide should correlate with your data coverage submission (Annex A).

An area to store supporting documentation, alongside your supporting evidence pack, will be provided within the secure file portal set up by BDUK when making your submission. Please contact [email protected] to confirm your intent to respond to this PR and we will provide you with access to the secure file portal.

Once evaluated, your supporting evidence pack will be baselined and can be used for subsequent responses to Open Market Reviews and/or PRs. For future submissions, suppliers should review and refresh the information provided in their pack but do not need to submit a new pack to support their claims. The document is a live document which can be updated for each submission in line with any changes to a supplier’s corresponding data submission (Annex A).

Please see below an outline of the process:

  1. Supplier confirms intent to respond to OMR and/or PR and BDUK sets up a secure file portal.

  2. Supplier uploads their data coverage file alongside a completed supporting evidence pack and full suite of information. This is required for all suppliers who have not completed the supporting evidence pack previously.

  3. BDUK assesses the evidence provided and raises clarification questions where necessary. Following the determination of supplier’s treatment, the supporting evidence pack for that submission is ‘baselined’.

  4. BDUK archives the baselined version of your supporting evidence.

  5. When responding to a subsequent OMR and or PR the supplier provides a new data coverage file and reviews the baselined evidence pack. The supplier will either:

    -Verify that the supporting evidence pack remains valid and no changes have been made to the information within; or

    -Amend some or all of the responses in line with any updates to coverage plans and refresh supporting documentation which is no longer valid. Any changes to the supporting evidence pack must be recorded accordingly.

Please note that the process outlined above is in effect as of 5 September 2022. The supporting evidence pack referenced in this Annex supersedes the previously issued Annex B: Supporting Evidence Template. Prior to September 2022, suppliers were asked to provide a fresh set of supporting information and a completed supporting evidence pack for each new submission. This new process aims to reduce the effort required for suppliers to provide updates to their submission on a regular basis.

Please note that suppliers who responded to OMRs or PRs prior to September 2022, using the previously issued supporting evidence template, are still required to complete the new supporting evidence pack. While we do understand this may represent some duplication of work we hope that by moving across to this new format it will reduce supplier burden in the long run.

Additional guidance on how to complete the supporting evidence pack will be provided when setting up the secure file portal.

If you require any additional support, guidance or clarification with any of this, please get in touch with us at [email protected]

If your future network plans are entirely reliant on BDUK subsidy/interventions (eg Vouchers) it may not be necessary to provide a complete set of supporting evidence alongside your data submission. Please contact [email protected] if you are unsure.

13. Annex C: Technical definition

The technical definition is given in the Subsidy Control Guidance Section of the BDUK website.

The key areas are:

Even if you are familiar with the definition, you should re-check it for each return, as it may change from time to time.

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