There have been lots of expansions and new initiatives from metro and regional fiber operators this week that are worth a comment:
Integra Telecom has expanded its connectivity in Arizona, building new connections into i/o Phoenix in order to offer a full suite of products to business customers there. Since its restructuring last summer, Integra has been more aggressive in taking advantage of its fiber. Phoenix is at the edge of its coverage area, maybe soon they’ll step beyond it into new markets.
Alongside its earnings report yesterday, Zayo also introduced a new product: antenna infrastructure solutions. Zayo has been perhaps the most aggressive metro fiber operator in the fiber-to-the-tower segment, and this seems to be derived from that effort. Zayo will not only provide fiber backhaul to the 1000+ towers they have on-net, but they will also provide services at those towers. Carriers will be able to leverage Zayo’s local expertise as they implement micro-cell solutions from those towers. I suspect Zayo’s efforts in this area will evolve rapidly, as it seems like a new place for a fiber operator to go. I don’t have a feel for the size of the market opportunity, anyone?
And down in the southeast, itcd did something it hasn’t done much of over the past few years. It added new PoPs to its fiber network across its footprint, expanding its wholesale portfolio. New sites were constructed in Florida (Miami, Ft. Lauderdale and West Palm Beach), Alabama (Birmingham), Tennessee (Nashville), Georgia (Albany and Macon), and North Carolina (Greensboro, Winston-Salem and Charlotte). Deltacom continues to plow forward, though the street has given it little credit for its improving EBITDA margin. I still think they’re a candidate for consolidation down the line, but in the short term I haven’t heard anything new.
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