Businessman Matthew Hare has been recognised for helping spread fast speed broadband across rural, hard to reach communities.
The Appleton man became the first British industry professional to receive the prominent Individual Award from the Fibre to the Home (FTTH) Council Europe awards in Valencia last month.
Mr Hare is the chief executive of Gigaclear, which he established in 2010.
Based in Windrush Court, Abingdon, it is now the UK’s leading supplier of full fibre broadband to rural locations across the country. It connected its 15,000th customer earlier this year.
President of the FTTH Council Europe, Ronan Kelly, said Mr Hare impressed with his ‘personal vision and relentless ambition’ over the years to cover rural Britain with faster internet speeds.
Living in rural Oxfordshire, Mr Hare is no stranger to internet connectivity and reliability problems.
He said it was an “honour” to be recognised, adding that the accolade “is testament to the work we have been doing to tackle rural isolation”.