Metro Bytes: tw telecom, Level 3, DukeNet, Charter, Mammoth

April 19th, 2013 by · 4 Comments

Lots of short but interesting items this week from across the industry. Here’s a quick look at some from the metro fiber community:

TW Telecom (NASDAQ:TWTC, news, filings) spruced up its balance sheet a bit yesterday. They successfully updated their credit agreement, increasing their Term Loan B from $462M to $520M and boosting the undrawn revolver from $80M to $100M while moving the maturity back to 2020. They also got the covenants to look more like the ones on their 5.375% senior notes, which among other things permits $250M annually for dividends, stock buybacks, and other items.  And that’s probably the sort of thing they’ll do with it, as opposed to the M&A front which remains quiet.

Level 3 Communications (NYSE:LVLT, news, filings) picked up an internet talk radio customer. VoiceAmerica will be using their CDN services to stream the various 300 radio programs to their 3M listeners. The CDN segment has been one of Level 3’s top growth engines, though it’s still fairly small relative to the rest of their business — just not as small as it once was.

In the Carolinas, DukeNet continued to increase its profile by bringing in Telarus to fortify their channel. The master agent agreement offers their 8,000 mile, southeastern US fiber network assets greater exposure, including integration with Telarus’s advanced quoting systems.

The cable MSO Charter has expanded its presence at Cologix’s Minneapolis data center. They’re looking to improve their IP peering capabilities with better proximity to their markets in the upper Midwest than they can get from Chicago. Cologix expanded to Minneapolis through the acquisition of the Minnesota Gateway just 11 months ago.

And in one that slipped through my nets last week, Mammoth Networks has boosted its southwestern footprint They’ve established a new PoP at Phoenix NAP, giving them a fourth hub in the city from which to offer Ethernet aggregation, Layer 2 network services, MPLS, and disaster recovery to the surrounding region.

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Categories: Content Distribution · Internet Backbones · Metro fiber

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4 Comments So Far

  • Jason Kam says:

    Hey Rob,

    Was doing some work with my colleagues on LVLT. The final thesis basically boils down to growing their top-line at 5%+ in order for the NOLs kick-in, EBITDA ramp, and positive FCF. Read your analyssi on LVLT; just wondering what gives you conviction of that revenue growth? The demand of optical fibers had been ample (forgot where I saw the data) and GLW had been posting growth in their telecom segment, pricing is probably gonna grind downwards, and I’m just not confident enough to assume that top-line increase given they had been achieve growth solely via acuiquisitions. Let me know. Thanks!

    • Good question says:

      I’d also be interested in your perspective on this, Rob.

    • There is no guarantee they will drive that revenue growth, my confidence level is in regards to the fact that they *can* if they approach it correctly. Others have been able to drive that organic growth, from tw telecom to Zayo to Cogent and others. Level 3 has the fiber assets to do the same if not better if they can find a related formula. But as history as shown, it’s not a trivial task.

  • Matt says:

    Skeptical would be an appropriate term for me.

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