Cincinnati Bell, ATC launch fiber portal targeting SMB customers

Cincinnati Bell and ATC Inc., a telecom consulting company, are co-marketing a new Web-based portal that allows businesses to find quotes and pricing for fiber services. ATC is operating the site and Cincinnati Bell is supporting the site and its mission.

In January, ATC launched, a site that provides quotes and counsel for businesses that are looking for Internet access and fiber-based Ethernet and transport services.

The QueenCityFiber site can be used to access information about service provider offerings throughout the United States, but the initial focus is on Cincinnati.

Greg Wheeler, VP of commercial sales for Cincinnati Bell, said in a Cincinnati Business Courier article that the telco isn't going to prioritize its own services over others featured on the site.

"It's a co-marketing partnership," Wheeler said. "Effectively we're helping a small IT consulting company provide a more transparent tool. We believe we'll benefit because we have more assets in the marketplace than other providers."

What's compelling about the service is that it can provide SMBs with the ability to get access to fiber-based services that were typically only available to large enterprise customers.

A key Cincinnati Bell partner, ATC has also opened a new office in West Chester Township, Ohio. At this office, ATC customers will get the opportunity to learn more about Cincinnati Bell's fiber-based business services, which is headquartered in downtown Cincinnati. 

This is an important partnership for Cincinnati Bell, particularly as it looks to attract more SMB customers to its fiber-based service portfolio. The telco faces greater competition from cable competitors like Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) and Charter Communications (NASDAQ: CHTR).

Cincinnati Bell has been extending fiber into more businesses as a complement to its residential Fioptics build, hoping to either win back or gain new customers who could previously only get slower copper-based services from the telco.

The efforts appear to be paying off. During the third quarter, Cincinnati Bell reported that strategic business revenue was $44 million -- including $3 million of Fioptics revenue -- for the quarter, up $4 million year-over-year after excluding revenue for services provided to its wireless operations.

For more:
- Cincinnati Business Courier has this article

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This article was updated on Feb. 3 to correct the nature of the relationship between Cincinnati Bell and ATC.