Oxford, BayRing merge to create Northern New England fiber competitor to FairPoint, Comcast

Oxford Networks and BayRing Communications have signed an agreement to merge in a deal that will create a larger fiber-based competitive provider threat to incumbent telco FairPoint and Comcast Business (NASDAQ: CMCSA) in Northern New England.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Paul Badeau, a spokesperson for Oxford Networks, told FierceTelecom in an e-mail that "at this time, both companies will continue to operate independently."

Upon completion of the merger, Oxford Networks' President and CEO Craig Gunderson will lead the combined company.

Gunderson said in a release that the merger will enable both companies "to leverage a significantly larger fiber network and data center infrastructure" to serve their growing base of New England customers.

Similar to other recent deals like Lightower's acquisition of Fibertech and Crown Castle's acquisition of Quanta Fiber Services, a key element of this merger is scale.

The new company will have a total of nearly 2,000 route miles of fiber providing access to nearly 50,000 buildings, four SOC 2 (Service Organization Control) data centers, and direct access to all other major hub data centers throughout Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. It will provide a suite of data center services, managed IT services, voice, Internet, and carrier services.

Both companies bring complementary assets to the table. Oxford has established a network footprint in Maine, while BayRing has a strong market presence in Southern Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts.

Besides bringing their fiber networks together, BayRing and Oxford also have data center facilities, a set of assets that will come in handy as the combined company enhances their broader cloud service and data center portfolio.

Complementing its network that envelops southern New Hampshire and extends from Portland into metro Boston, BayRing also operates two data centers in Portsmouth, N.H. Likewise, Oxford Networks has data centers located in Brunswick and Bangor, Maine.

This merger is another step forward in Oxford's growth strategy. In 2014, Oxford Networks, which had been struggling financially, sold itself to Montreal-based private equity firm Novacap for $50 million. 

For more:
- see the release

Related articles:
Private equity firm to acquire Maine's Oxford Networks for $50M
BayRing Communications leverages FirstLight Fiber to extend fiber reach in New England