A DEAL has been agreed to help bring 'central belt' broadband speeds to businesses in the Scottish Borders.

The region has been languishing behind both Edinburgh and Glasgow, as well as the towns in between, when it comes to broadband connections.

But now a collaboration between two of Scotland’s longest established telecommunications firms intends to bring the Borders up to speed.

Local firm GB Technologies Ltd, which has its headquarters in Galashiels, is working with Commsworld to provide a ‘next generation network’ that can deliver speeds 500 times faster than the average UK broadband connection.

The smart network can also detect the shortest direct route from the Borders – bypassing the 600-mile round trip to datacentres around London that can contribute to slower network speeds.

The new network will be dedicated to business users, meaning customers won’t have to contend with residential users using the same connection, which can slow down internet speeds.

Gordon Brown, founder and chairman of GB Technologies Ltd, told the Border Telegraph: “The infrastructure now in place in the Scottish Borders has the potential to have a transformative effect on the region’s business landscape.

“For us, working with another Scottish business rather than a multinational brings a number of benefits to us and our customers.

“The personal service we receive and the focus on providing a genuinely Scottish network enables us to provide local firms with a package that provides speeds that some of the larger network providers are not interested in or able to offer.”

Every part of the Borders will have access to the fibre network for achieving greater upload speeds and easier transfer of files, while cloud connectivity will also be greatly boosted.

Commsworld is an Edinburgh headquartered firm, with offices in Glasgow and Aberdeen and more than 80 staff operating across public and private sector contracts.

Founded in 1994, it is Scotland’s leading Telecommunications Network Provider, providing customers with a full range of integrated communications solutions.

Charlie Boisseau, chief operating officer at Commsworld, believes the deal will help the Borders retain businesses in an increasingly data reliant world, while attracting further industry.

He said: “The work GB Technologies is doing is fantastic and we are always incredibly eager to work with quality partners based in the areas we are providing connectivity for.

“The next generation network is a great example of what a collaborative and local approach can do for the customers in less densely populated areas.

“This kind of network is able to identify the most efficient route when two connected users are trying to speak to each other – a bit like being in Galashiels and using the A7 to get to Hawick, rather than taking a detour via London!”