AT&T lights 93 North Carolina buildings with fiber as part of Project VIP initiative

AT&T (NYSE: T) is putting more Ethernet and cloud services into the hands of over 2,500 North Carolina businesses by completing its fiber buildout into 93 new multi-tenant units (MTUs) in the state.

Similar to its recent fiber MTU expansion announcement in Florida, the move in North Carolina is part of the telco's ambitious three-year Project Velocity IP (Project VIP) plan to bring fiber to an additional 1 million business customer locations in its wireline serving area by the end of 2015.

Through the fiber to the building (FTTB) program, North Carolina businesses that reside in AT&T Fiber Ready Buildings will be able to get access to an expanded set of security, network and cloud-based services.

North Carolina is one of AT&T's big investment targets. In related news, the service provider said that it installed fiber to an additional 29 multi-tenant buildings across the Charlotte metro area, extending fiber-based broadband services to over 1,200 business customer locations.

Two key goals of the FTTB program are to drive more customers onto its higher speed Ethernet and to provide IP VPN services.

While it won't release its Q3 2013 earnings until Oct. 23, next-gen services once again helped it offset declines in legacy services such as Frame Relay and ATM in the second quarter. Ethernet and IP VPN revenue rose 15 percent vs. the year-earlier quarter, and those services represent an $8.4 billion revenue stream.  

For over six years, AT&T has enjoyed the top ranking on Vertical Systems Group's half-year domestic Ethernet leaderboard report, which measures port shares sold. Adding more buildings to its network will continue to solidify its ranking as a major Ethernet player.

AT&T may be seeing more competition from a growing group of cable MSOs and CLECs, but VSG said in a previous interview with FierceTelecom that the carrier will have the advantage with its  ability to provide private business clouds using fiber-based Ethernet Private Lines (EPLs) and Ethernet Virtual Private Lines (EVPLs). 

For more:
- see the North Carolina release
- see the Charlotte release

Special report: AT&T's $14B Project VIP: breaking out the business service, U-verse numbers

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AT&T U-verse subs top 9.4 million in Q2, 45 Mbps speeds coming soon
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