National metro operator abvt says that it has put substantial resources to work in its Atlanta market this year. That means new low latency fiber routes bringing more key sites on-net in downtown Atlanta, Alpharetta, Buckhead and Norcross, highlighting QTS in particular. It also means additional headcount and expertise dedicated to the Southeast.
Atlanta hasn’t historically been one of AboveNet’s biggest markets, although they’ve been there for a long time of course. But the market has long had a thriving alternative metro fiber market, which even after substantial consolidation still features a number of competitive players with substantial assets.
AboveNet reports Q4 earnings next week, and will no doubt continue its steady revenue growth with high EBITDA margins. No doubt this will be one of several expansion projects they describe. With capex still hovering at around 30% of revenue, they’ve got to be spending it on something. Perhaps a new market or two?
Somehow, they have managed to ignore all M&A temptations that have crossed their path in the past few years in favor of organic growth. Their ‘data center neutral’ approach seems tailor-made to the cloud revolution that is now underway, but I still wonder if they might not find an inorganic opportunity this year that finally fits the bill.