Two fiber networks in Indiana have been announced in recent weeks. The two said today that one will make an investment in the other and that the two will work together.
The two fiber networks are Hoosier Net and the Accord Telecommunications Collaborative, LLC. Under the agreement, Accord has made an investment in and will partner with Hoosier Net. The amount of the investment was not disclosed.
Hoosier Net says that the agreement makes it the first statewide fiber network in Indiana that is comprised of both electric cooperatives and telephone companies. The move comes in anticipation of the distribution of billions of dollars in broadband grants under the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program. The program is part of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.
“Accord’s investment in Hoosier Net is another step toward accomplishing our shared vision of making Indiana the most connected state,” James Tanneberger, Accord’s chairman and president and chief executive officer of South-Central Indiana REMC, said in the press release about the Indiana fiber networks. “We and our Hoosier Net partners form an unprecedented mix of electric cooperatives and telephone companies. Together we are seeking win-win opportunities that will ultimately benefit all Hoosiers, and that is what makes us excited about this investment.”
Hoosier Net is a middle mile network that provides owners, telecommunications providers and direct commercial clients including schools, hospitals and government offices with fiber backbone capabilities. It was announced on June 1. The stated goal is to create middle mile infrastructure to reduce the cost of connecting unserved and underserved areas of the state.
Accord was announced on June 14. Its owners collectively serve more than 300,000 homes and businesses in Indiana. They own about 20,000 miles of fiber and about 40,000 miles of electric lines.
Accord is owned by 21 service providers and Hoosier Net is owned by 17. One organization – SEI Communications – is a member of both groups