Top Tampa ISPs Sell Out

Peter : On Rad's Radar?
| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

Top Tampa ISPs Sell Out

Last month, Verizon announced that it was selling wireline assets of VZT in Florida, California and Texas to Frontier. Today, Charter announced a deal to buy Bright House Networks for about $5K per subscriber or about 2.8x revenue. [Charter is only buying 73% of BHN, which may be just to take care of the hanging chad that is BHN in the TWC deal.]

Tampa Bay was the market that Verizon tested FiOS head-to-head against cable. I guess they didn't like the results.

Bright House is a bunch of small cable systems cobbled together by TWC that the owner of the Business Journals ended up owning. However, they did upgrade that system to DOCSIS 3.0 and attack the business market, much to the chagrin of VZ and the other service providers in the region.

Now the Tampa Bay region will see - not one - but two transitions occur at the largest TV providers and ISPs. Already, employees in both organizations are weary about job losses and what it will be like under the new regime. That makes for a messy workplace.

The Charter deal for BHN is contingent upon Comcast buying TWC. Charter's move seems to indicate that Charter thinks that the deal will be approved. I don't know. This much consolidation is not pro-consumer. This much consolidation will not get the FCC or the President the Broadband map that it desires.

For Tampa Bay, as with most M&A, there will be job losses, a change in attitude, less customer service and uncertainty. Bigger is rarely better for the customers.

For competitors, if they can get their act together, it could mean at least a year of opportunity to cherry pick customers. Most will tie their shoelaces together and face plant, but one or two will make hay.

All of these deals are backed up at the DOJ and FCC awaiting approval, behind the Comcast-TWC deal and the AT&T- DirecTV acquisition.

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