Lightower Fiber Networks has started 2011 by making its fourth deal in the past 8 months to expand its footprint by taking out NSTAR Communications. In this case though, it's not quite an M&A but rather the acquisition of all remaining network capacity from NSTAR's subsidiary. NSTAR is keeping those parts they already use for their energy business I suppose. The NSTAR network covers 280 route miles with access to 225 buildings throughout the Boston metropolitan area. I managed to dig up an old copy of their network map below:
Lightower already had a substantial footprint in Boston, which they also boosted further with the acquisition of Veroxity back in the summer. The addition of the NSTAR fiber network is complementary to those assets, and further establishes them as one of the largest providers in the Boston market. NSTAR was known to be looking for someone to sell its fiber to in some form ever since last April when we broke that story right here, and Lightower was always a clear frontrunner. But apparently it took quite a while to work out the details.
So for Lightower that makes 4 in some 8 months: Veroxity, Lexent, Open Access, and now NSTAR Communications. Each filled one or more holes in their current footprint, but there aren't too many left that fit the same bill. If Lightower's private equity backers have more M&A in mind, they might now be looking further afield.
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