ImOn Communications, a service provider that to this point has focused on eastern Iowa, has closed the acquisition of FiberComm, a company that serves the western region of the state.
ImOn provides a FTTP platform and a network of more than 2,000 miles that reaches more than 100,000 households and businesses. It is working on an expansion in Cedar Rapids, Marion, Hiawatha, Iowa City, Coralville and Dubuque. The company was founded in 2007.
A definitive agreement for the deal was announced in January. The FiberComm acquisition is ImOn’s first move outside of the eastern sector of the state.
ImOn CEO Patrice Carroll indicated in a press release that the initial focus will be on the Sioux City area but also noted that ImOn plans to expand to Nebraska and South Dakota.
In February 2022, Goldman Sachs Asset Management, which is the investment arm of Goldman Sachs, agreed to acquire ImOn Communications LLC. The acquisition closed on April 22, 2022.
It’s not surprising that Goldman Sachs saw a service provider in Iowa as an attractive target. The COVID-19 pandemic has made significant funding available at the federal, state and local level for broadband buildouts.
At the beginning of the year, Telecompetitor reviewed some of the merger and acquisition activity that occurred during 2022. This included a large amount of private equity investment, which was headlined by Apollo Global Management’s Brightspeed acquisition. The newly formed company acquired operations in 20 states from Lumen Technologies. There also were several investments that didn’t involve private equity investors.
The Goldman Sachs investment in ImOn is another example of investment firms’ involvement in broadband.
In January, Scott Soden, managing principal at Alpina Capital told the RTIME conference in San Diego that telecom network valuations have risen dramatically during the past five years. He cautioned, though, that valuations were coming down somewhat as interest rates rose.