Comcast Business ups competitive ante against Verizon with $9M Virginia fiber network investment

Comcast Business (NASDAQ: CMCSA) plans to invest over $9 million over the next 12 months to expand its fiber network in Virginia, enabling it to reach over 3,000 businesses with Ethernet services.

Over the fiber network, Comcast Business can deliver speeds of up to 100 Gbps.

Initially, the network expansion will address downtown Richmond and the Near West End, two large business districts.

During the second phase of the fiber build, Comcast Business will extend its fiber network to Glen Allen outside of Richmond, Sterling near Dulles Airport, Manassas, Fredericksburg, and parts of Southwest Virginia, including Lynchburg, Salem and Roanoke County, within the company's existing footprint.

Comcast Business' buildout comes at a time when Virginia cities like Richmond are revitalizing their entertainment and retail districts, while seeing an influx of new small businesses and startups.

The service provider says that this trend will create "a hotbed of economic development" that will require access to fiber-based Ethernet services that Comcast can offer.

Comcast Business can also appeal to larger multi-site businesses that may have offices throughout Virginia and other states, via its new Enterprise services division. Leveraging a mix of its own network facilities and that of other cable and CLEC partners, this division is designed to appeal to large businesses that have multiple branch offices.

The service provider continues to be aggressive with its Northeast fiber builds. In April, Comcast Business struck a deal to extend fiber services to Bethesda Green, an incubator for environmentally sustainable businesses in Montgomery County, Maryland.

Besides its network expansion efforts, the service provider is enhancing its service portfolio, particularly in areas like cloud services. Comcast Business began offering direct links to Amazon Web Services (NASDAQ: AMZN) through its status as an AWS Partner, giving customers private network connectivity to over 1 million Ethernet-enabled buildings.

While Comcast Business is certainly making a splash in Virginia, it will face off with Verizon in the state.

Verizon may have been a bit quiet on the Ethernet front in recent years as it switched more of its focus to wireless, but its pending acquisition of XO Communications will deepen its fiber and Ethernet footprint in Northeast markets like Virginia. XO will give Verizon entry to 40 major U.S. metro markets with over 4,000 on-net buildings and 1.2 million fiber miles.

For more:
- see the release

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