If you ask Brian Worthen, President and CEO of facilities-based reseller Mammoth Networks what differentiates him from the pack it would be its ability to be not only "approachable," but also "flexible" in terms of the solutions they provide to their service provider and/or enterprise customer base. As Mammoth moves into 2011, he believes that the recent consolidation of the competitive telecom and Tier 2 ILEC market will provide even more opportunities for growth as customers look for alternative players for their bandwidth needs. FierceTelecom Editor Sean Buckley caught up with Worthen to talk about what new opportunities lay ahead for the service provider in 2011.
FierceTelecom: Brian, Mammoth just came off a very successful year with a number of new products and a new drive into the independent ILEC market. To start, can you talk a bit about some of the highlights of your success in 2010?
Worthen: Well, 2010 growth was a combination of a number of things. Our core business back in the day was DSL when we first started and it continues to grow. It's one of those where we need to make sure we have enough network capacity. The other factor in 2010 was private line. A number of people are coming to us to replace Sprint MPLS or Verizon MPLS network because we can combine multiple technologies. They are looking for someone who is more approachable, I think. My staff and I talk about this all of the time. These customers could be going to AT&T (NYSE: T), Verizon (NYSE: VZ) and Sprint (NYSE: S) so why do they keep knocking on our door? The answer is we actually answer the phone. There was a specific customer earlier last year that wanted Frame Relay (FR). That's an older technology and not a lot of companies do that.
I would say the other factor is that we're not only approachable, but we're also flexible. We don't own the network. We also don't specifically look at one specific product, but rather how do we reach every business in this multi-site network? We just take more of an agnostic approach. Our DSL growth, for example, was attributed to the fact that our network is Layer 2 and people can build whatever they want on it. We only sell to service providers and large enterprises and the fact that someone could build a point of sales system for 40 restaurants or a chain of a 100 stores in a mall that are commonly found in metro areas is pretty intriguing because they can order and we set it up in an automated fashion.
FierceTelecom: You said your customer mix is mainly carriers and large enterprises. How do you break that out and what are they looking for Mammoth to provide them with these days?
Worthen: The big demand for the last three or four months has been Gbps-based services. Nobody calls anymore for OC-3 or DS-3--that's gone the way of the dodo bird. The typical client for us, or 70 percent of our client base, is a service provider in some form or another whether they are a voice provider, a regional provider that needs additional footprint outside of their coverage area, or a rural phone company. We serve rural very well. There's a wide range. We also serve what we refer to as Layer 2 integrators, which are similar to MegaPath.
FierceTelecom: Okay, would you consider yourself a middle mile-type provider?
Worthen: We always refer to ourselves as a facilities-based reseller. Most of the time people are coming to us for an access solution. In fact, we started a partnership with key data center providers, one of which is focused on selling IP and rack space. A number of opportunities leave because the access line is just too expensive. They are reaching out and buying it from a Verizon, who is reaching out and buying from Edison Carrier Solutions. There are so many people stepping on it by the time it's resold to the customer it makes it a hard sell for this IP company to sell their Internet bandwidth and they use us for access and we can approach Edison directly. We have reached that size where we can go to Qwest (NYSE: Q), Edison, Verizon or Syringa in Idaho and buy those services direct. We have reached the point where we have that knowledge and we can bypass the Bell Operating Companies or regional LECs.