Light Reading

Small Wireless Firms Get Set for Recovery Funds

Dan Jones
LR Mobile News Analysis
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor
7/7/2009
50%
50%

Many of the larger wireless providers quizzed by Unstrung say they're "undecided" on whether to make a bid for the $7+ billion in broadband network loans and grants set aside as part of the Recovery Act. (See Buy American? Not if It's Broadband.)

Clearwire LLC (Nasdaq: CLWR), Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S), and Verizon Wireless all fall into the undecided camp. AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) hasn't yet responded to questions about a bid. (See Defining Broadband.) Verizon went a bit further in suggesting that it -- and other larger carriers -- probably aren't the intended target for the money. "Verizon is contributing to the stimulus by its investment and innovation in broadband networks," a Verizon spokesperson tells Unstrung.

The companies that are making plans to be potential recipients of government money are smaller wireless broadband vendors like DigitalBridge Communications Corp. (DBC) and Towerstream Corp. (Nasdaq: TWER).

"We can demonstrate a proven shovel-ready business model," says Jeff Thompson, CEO of TowerStream, a WiMax service provider for small and medium-sized businesses.

Thompson plans to apply for a grant under the Broadband Technology Opportunities Plan (BTOP), rather than go for a rural-related grant. He says it will allow the operator to deploy in underserved areas in -- or adjacent to -- Towerstream's existing markets.

"We probably wouldn't go after them without the money," Thompson says, suggesting that the firm's focus on providing broadband to SMBs means that it is right in the area where the most jobs could be created.

TowerStream currently operates in New York City, Boston, Los Angeles, Chicago, the San Francisco Bay Area, Miami, Seattle, Dallas-Fort Worth, and the greater Providence, R.I., area where the company is based. Thompson estimates that the network already spans markets with around 100 million people in them.

DBC, meanwhile, is a WiMax operator that covers smaller towns and cities. A company spokeswoman confirmed to Unstrung via email that it is planning to apply for broadband money.

A company called ERF Wireless Inc. is working with Schlumberger Ltd. "to build wireless connections in rural parts of the country." It also appears to be interested in the funding. Unstrung hopes to find out more about ERF's plans later this week.

For all the potential applicants of Recovery Act grants and loans, time is of the essence. "There's not a lot of time to get a proposal together," as a Sprint spokesman noted.

The companies that want to get onboard are now waiting for application details. TowerStream's Thompson says they could be released any minute now. The application should give more guidance on how much money interested parties can apply for, though we already know that any company applying for funds must be able to match at least 20 percent of the applied-for amount itself.

Proposals for the money have to be submitted between July 14 and August 14. Thompson says TowerStream is expecting to get its proposal for the BTOP money together for an August submission.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Flash Poll
From The Founder
The Swedish vendor has undergone a significant transformation during the past few years, adjusting to the demands of next-generation communications companies.
LRTV Documentaries
The 3GPP's Road to 5G Standardization

4|17|15   |   4:43   |   (0) comments


Satoshi Nagata, chairman of the 3GPP's TSG-RAN group and a manager at NTT Docomo, explains the standardization process for 5G, as well as the biggest challenges and opportunities.
LRTV Documentaries
AlcaLu CTO Makes the Case for a New 5G Air Interface

4|16|15   |   3:54   |   (0) comments


Michael Peeters, CTO of wireless at Alcatel-Lucent, explains why 5G will require a new air interface to meet its diverse performance targets.
LRTV Documentaries
AlcaLu + Nokia: The New Uber-Vendor

4|15|15   |   2:42   |   (4) comments


Heavy Reading Senior Analyst Gabriel Brown discusses the technological and competitive opportunities and challenges if a merger between Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia comes to pass.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Data Center Power Play

4|15|15   |   6:22   |   (0) comments


Huawei has developed industry-leading energy efficiency capabilities for its indoor and outdoor data center solutions, explains Dr. Fang Liangzhou, vice president of Huawei's Network Energy product Line.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei’s Routers, Switches Get the Green Mark

4|15|15   |   2:02   |   (0) comments


TUV Rheinland's Frank Dudley explains how Huawei's routers and switches have been successfully tested by energy efficiency experts and have gained Green Mark Certification.
LRTV Documentaries
A Finn, a Frenchman & a Guy From New Jersey Walk Into a Merger...

4|15|15   |   3:17   |   (0) comments


Stop us if you've heard this one before... Light Reading CEO Founder & CEO Steve Saunders weighs in on the technical and cultural implications of a Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent merger.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Accounting for Better Solutions

4|10|15   |   02:31   |   (1) comment


Murad Yousuf, CTO at Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Finance (Dept. of Zakat & Income Tax), talks about the benefits of deploying router technology from Huawei.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
What's in Store for Huawei & DataCore?

4|10|15   |   05:44   |   (0) comments


At the CeBIT trade show in Hannover, Germany, George Teixeira, CEO of software-defined storage (SDS) specialist DataCore Software, explains why he has just signed a partnership agreement with Huawei Technologies.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Du Puts Its Faith in Huawei's Routers

4|9|15   |   3:42   |   (0) comments


Adnan Masood, director of Enterprise MS Solutions Marketing at du, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) operator also known as Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company, explains why his company chose to use Huawei's multifunctional AR routers as part of its managed enterprise services.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Gets Active in the Data Center

4|9|15   |   3:17   |   (0) comments


With enterprise users looking to maximize the use of their data center assets, Huawei’s Chief Architect & Technical Director of IT Data Center Solutions, Bruce Su, explains how the company's six-layer active-active data center solution is eradicating the need to deploy passive, redundant data center assets.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Blue Consult & Huawei for a Better Solution

4|8|15   |   4:01   |   (0) comments


Martin Rott, CEO, and Marc Metzler, head of sales virtualization, from Germany's Blue Consult discuss their collaboration with Huawei and TrendMicro to develop a secure, scalable IT platform that can meet the needs of the most demanding enterprise users.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Beach Petroleum on eLTE & Mining

4|8|15   |   3:09   |   (0) comments


Network systems integrator Jeremy Hamlyn explains how Huawei's secure packet-based trunking communications system, eLTE, can help remote communities and companies in the mining, oil and gas sectors, deploy efficient communications networks that are perfect for video and data as well as voice.
Upcoming Live Events
May 5, 2015, Hyatt McCormick Place, Chicago, IL
May 6, 2015, Georgia World Congress, Atlanta, GA
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 10, 2015, Chicago, IL
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
November 11-12, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Network Instruments, a JDSU division, shares results from its 2015 State of the Network, a global survey on security.
Hot Topics
Verizon Scores New OTT Content Deals
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 4/16/2015
Can WiFi Calling Find Its Voice?
Iain Morris, News Editor, 4/13/2015
Senator Proposes New 'Title X' for Net Neutrality
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 4/13/2015
Nokia, Alcatel-Lucent in Merger Talks
Iain Morris, News Editor, 4/14/2015
Nokia & Alcatel-Lucent: What's Going On?
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 4/15/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Data Center Interconnect, or DCI, is one of the hottest sectors in telecom currently. Since coming back to Light Reading last year, prodigal-son style, I've ...
LR CEO and Founder Steve Saunders sits down with the head of Qosmos to talk about the changing state of the art in deep packet inspection technology, including its role in SDN and NFV architectures.
Cats with Phones
Steve's Phone Click Here
Steve Saunders's personal phone.