US round-up: TDS concludes BendBroadband buy; Connecticut authorities object to Frontier deal; NewWave plots 1Gbps service; Fibertech reaches Detroit

4 Sep 2014

TDS Telecom, a subsidiary of Telephone and Data Systems, has confirmed that it has bought ‘substantially all’ of the assets of Bend, Oregon-based broadband service provider BendBroadband. TDS paid USD261 million for the acquisition, which was first unveiled in May this year. The deal has now received all of the necessary regulatory approvals. BendBroadband reported annual revenues of USD70 million in 2013.

Frontier Communications has hit a significant stumbling block in completing its proposed acquisition of AT&T’s Connecticut wireline business, Fierce Telecom reports, as the state Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) has denied a settlement the telco reached with state officials. In a filing issued last week, PURA said the settlement, which was jointly written by Connecticut’s Attorney General George Jepsen and Consumer Counsel Elin Swanson Katz, did not properly address the needs of Connecticut residents. A meeting to discuss the relevant issues will be held later this month.

NewWave Communications is preparing to launch a 1Gbps broadband service in a handful of rural markets in 2015, Multichannel.com reports, noting that the telco will use the emerging DOCSIS 3.1 platform to support the service. It will begin the deployment during the fourth quarter of 2014, and plans to bring Gigabit-class services to residential and business customers in new markets, including Poplar Bluff (Missouri), where it competes with AT&T, and in Monroe, Rayville, Delhi and Tallulah (Louisiana), where it competes with a mix of municipal and local service providers. NewWave currently serves more than 150,000 residential and business customers in parts of Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Texas.

Jackson, Mississippi is the latest – and largest – city to sign a franchise agreement with C Spire Wireless to offer the company’s fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) service, the Jackson Clarion Ledger reports. The other cities that have pre-qualified include Batesville, Clinton, Corinth, Hattiesburg, Horn Lake, McComb, Quitman, Ridgeland and Starkville. Individual ‘fiberhoods’ will witness FTTH deployments providing 35%-45% of people in those neighbourhoods sign up.

Fibertech Networks has confirmed that it has deployed 100 miles of fibre-optic infrastructure in Southeastern Michigan. The network consists of two, self-healing ring configurations, and is currently carrying broadband traffic in the metro Detroit area. Earlier this year, Fibertech announced plans to roll out 800 miles of fibre in and around Detroit, including numerous suburban cities such as Trenton, Canton, Dearborn, Southfield, Warren, Troy and Chesterfield, among others. The entire core network is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2015. Founded in 2000, and headquartered in Rochester, NY, Fibertech currently boasts metro-area fibre networks in 30 mid-size cities in the Eastern and Central regions of the US.

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