Metro Bytes 4/12: Fatbeam, Optimum Lightpath, Lightower, Birch

April 12th, 2012 by · Leave a Comment

Here’s a quick look at recent news items from the metro space:

Up in the Pacific Northwest, Fatbeam picked up an eight year, $2M+ E-Rate contract with the Yakima School District for dark fiber. Yakima is planning to put in 20Gbps connections between its locations, which dodecatuples their current 1Gbps connectivity. Fatbeam has also recently added maps of its metro footprint to its website, and I have added them to my Pacific Northwest and Rockies pages – both of which have always been a bit sparse compared to the rest.

In New York, Optimum Lightpath boosted its managed video services with uncompressed HD support. That means their content customers can now send 1.485GB linear uncompressed HD-SDI over a dedicated wavelength. New York is probably the only market in the country where an independent, single market metro fiber operator can make this sort of headway in managed video transport, and Optimum Lightpath’s cable roots probably don’t hurt.

Lightower Fiber Networks became the latest in the steady stream of fiber operators building into the new TELEHOUSE facility at Chelsea. Lightower made itself a metro fiber power in Manhattan with its purchase of Lexent Metro Connect two years ago, and continues to build out its presence to maintain that position. Since its acquisition binge, they’ve been quietly making organic progress but is probably just about ready for another inorganic move I think.

And Birch Communications finished up its acquisition of AstroTel down in Florida, which it announced just after New Year’s. The deal gives them greater customer density and includes a regional IP backbone on the state’s west coast. They have quietly been rolling up little CLECs around the country for six years now, with this being their 14th. There’s plenty more out there where that came from if they’re still hungry.

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Categories: CLEC · Mergers and Acquisitions · Metro fiber · Video

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