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AT&T, VZ Leaders in Fiber-Lit Buildings

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AT&T, VZ Leaders in Fiber-Lit Buildings

August 07, 2017
By Paula Bernier
Executive Editor, TMC

AT&T, Verizon, Spectrum Enterprise, CenturyLink, and Comcast (News - Alert).

These companies are the leaders when it comes to having fiber lit buildings in the U.S. So says Vertical Systems Group in its year-end 2016 leaderboard, which it released just last week.

Further down the list, in this order, are Level 3, Cox, Lightower, Zayo, Altice USA, and Frontier. And next, in what Vertical Systems Group categorizes as the Challenge Tier, are Cincinnati Bell (News - Alert), Cleareon, Cogent, Consolidated Communications, Electric Lightwave, Fairpoint, FiberLight, FiberNet Direct, FirstLight, IFN, Lumos, Southern Light, Sunesys, Unite Private Networks, Uniti Fiber, Windstream (News - Alert), and XO. (The Challenge Tier includes entities with lit fiber reaching between 2,000 and 9,999 U.S. commercial buildings.)

 “On-net fiber lit buildings are valued strategic assets that give retail and wholesale providers a competitive edge in profitably delivering services to business customers,” says Rosemary Cochran, principal at Vertical Systems Group.

“A major benefit of a fiber lit building is ready connectivity with provisioning through service orchestration, without the construction cost and extensive lead time required to light a building,” she adds. “These dynamics are driving this year’s acquisitions among fiber providers that will significantly impact the U.S. fiber landscape. Eighteen of the 28 Fiber LEADERBOARD and Challenge Tier companies have fiber-related transactions just completed or pending.”

Indeed. Here’s a quick rundown of some of those deals.

Consolidated Communication has bought FairPoint. Uniti Fiber has purchased both Hunt Telecom and Southern Light (News - Alert). And Verizon has acquired XO Communications.

“Verizon's purchase and integration of XO's fiber network will help the company extend its suite of high-quality network services to its enterprise and wholesale customers,” Verizon (News - Alert) said in a February press release announcing the close of the deal. “In addition, it will help the company in its plans to densify its cellular network, and to deploy new 5G technologies.”

Meanwhile, some of the previously announced combinations are awaiting closure. For example, CenturyLink is buying Level 3. (That deal has been approved by 23 states and territories and is set to close by the ned of next month.) And Crown Castle expects to purchase Lightower.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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