Integra Telecom continued its campaign for a more fiber-dependent diet this week by building out its metro connectivity to two of Digital Realty's many data centers. The western regional network operator has brought two of the data center REIT's locations in Sacramento, CA and Hillsboro, OR online. They've been adding key buildings to their network at an accelerated rate for a year or two now.
It's a further evolution of the company's business model away from the SME and toward larger enterprise customers and even wholesale offerings. After all, that is the type of business that tends to turn to Digital Realty for their infrastructure. In this interview recently here on Ramblings, CEO Kevin O'Hara was very clear about the company's focus on taking full advantage of all the fiber infrastructure they do have.
Integra is probably still viewed by many as a potential player in further fiber consolidation, with companies like Windstream and Earthlink that are still in need of infrastructure out west featuring highly. But Integra's financials demonstrate a quite different profile than recent targets of either of those (PAETEC, Deltacom, One). Perhaps something like a merger with Lightower/Sidera to assemble another nearly national footprint backed by a suite of private equity might make at least as much sense.