FairPoint extends wholesale Ethernet reach into Boston

FairPoint (Nasdaq: FRP) on Thursday introduced a new wholesale Ethernet service option that will give businesses access from Boston to the company's northern New England network footprint in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.

Offered out of the One Summer Street carrier hotel at One Summer Street in Boston, Carrier Ethernet Service (CES) Extended Connect will provide an access point for wholesale carrier customers who need an interconnection into northern New England. An attractive point of CES Extended Connect is the reach of its network.

To date, the telco has an Ethernet network that spans over 15,000 route miles of fiber. Currently, over 80 percent of its COs have been equipped with Ethernet switching and related equipment to deliver CES to retail and wholesale customers, enabling them to connect with more than 95 percent of New England businesses.

The CES Extended Connect capability builds on the wholesale Carrier Ethernet Services (CES) 2.0 service which FairPoint launched last October. Targeting a host of traditional wireline and wireless operators, CES 2.0 includes a Class of Service (CoS) capability that allows customers to prioritize traffic based on application.  

Over its MPLS and fiber-based Vantage Point network, FairPoint delivers three main Ethernet services sets to wholesale customers:  E-Line, which it launched in October 2011, Ethernet Private Line (EPL) and Ethernet Virtual Private Line (EVPL).

As the company continues to see traditional residential voice lines decline, Ethernet overall was once again a major factor in FairPoint's revenue growth in Q4 2012, contributing about $12 million of revenue, up from $7 million in Q4 2011. The growth of Ethernet drove up the telco's total data and Internet services revenue 13.1 percent year-over-year.

FairPoint said it expects growth in its Ethernet "to continue as regional banks, healthcare networks and wireless carriers transition away from legacy technologies like frame relay."

However compelling FairPoint's lead in northern New England is, it will see continued competition from a host of competitive telcos and cable operators such as a soon-to-be-combined Lightower/Sidera, Tech Valley Communications and Comcast Business (Nasdaq: CMCSA).

For more:
- see the release

Earnings roundup: Wireline telecom earnings in the fourth quarter of 2012

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