Time for a Friday roundup of network news that slipped through the cracks or left me initially tongue tied, with items from tw telecom, Level 3, Hurricane Electric, Cross River Fiber, and Zayo:
TW Telecom (NASDAQ:TWTC, news, filings) responded to all the rumor hoopla in the best possible way, with a contract announcement with dollar signs attached. The nation's deepest metro operator won two federal contracts from the US Department of Health and Human Services and the agencies it manages. They'll be providing private Ethernet connectivity and 10G waves to the NIH, CDC, FDA, and IHS in Washington DC, Atlanta, and Albuquerque. Combined, the deals are worth up to $11.67M over five years.
Level 3 Communications (NYSE:LVLT, news, filings) skillfully ignored all the merger talk via earbuds, or more specifically Skullcandy. They'll be providing global IP VPN connectivity and SIP voice to the high-style headphone maker to keep the company connected to itself, its customers, and its manufacturer in China.
Hurricane Electric opened for business in Columbus, Ohio this week. They've moved in at DataCenter.BZ's facility at 555 Scherers Court, opening a new PoP. DataCenter.BZ operates both colo and dark fiber in the Columbus metro area, and is a strategic move by Hurricane Electric to boost its presence throughout the surrounding region and neighboring states.
In New Jersey, dedicated dark fiber specialist Cross River Fiber secured a key customer in the healthcare vertical. Atlantic Health System will be using their infrastructure to support the big data requirements of modern medical technology via dark fiber. The new network adds 50 miles to Cross River's footprint, connecting the Newton Medical Center in Sussex Counth with Atlantic's primary data center. Not many New Jersey fiber footprints go all the way out to Newton, which is not far from my own hometown.
And finally, just this morning Zayo tapped the credit markets just as Level 3 did not long ago to refinance some debt. They were able to take down the interest rate on their $1.6B term load to LIBOR+4.00% and their undrawn credit facility to LIBOR+3.50%. They expect to save $30M in annual cash interest payments, which is not a minor sum. Additionally, they amended the terms of their credit agreement, increasing its incremental capacity, removing leverage limitations on future acquisitions, and shrinking it by 10% to $225M. In about a month we will get our first real look at the combined Zayo/AboveNet/Fibergate/USCarrier/Arialink/MarquisNet. Yep that's five deals in three quarters, anybody for six?