Lumbee River Electric chooses Calix GPON equipment

Calix Inc. (NYSE: CALX) says that Lumbee River Electric Membership Corp. (LREMC) has selected the Calix E7-20 and E7-2 Ethernet Service Access Platforms (ESAPs) and 700GE series optical network terminals (ONTs) to deliver voice, video, and high-speed data services to residents and businesses in North Carolina's Robeson County. The LREMC open access network will use GPON technology for service delivery.

Calix Inc. (NYSE: CALX) says that Lumbee River Electric Membership Corp. (LREMC) has selected the Calix E7-20 and E7-2 Ethernet Service Access Platforms (ESAPs) and 700GE series optical network terminals (ONTs) to deliver voice, video, and high-speed data services to residents and businesses in North Carolina's Robeson County. The LREMC open access network will use GPON technology for service delivery.

With over 50,000 electric members across 2,500 square miles in four counties, LREMC expanded its service offering to include broadband services in 2012. A previously underserved area, LREMC was awarded a $19.9 million broadband stimulus combined grant and loan to bring fiber-based services to approximately 15,000 residents, 1,600 businesses, and 100 anchor institutions.

As an electric cooperative, LREMC applied for broadband stimulus funding with the intent to attract an established telecommunications service provider to deliver services to subscribers. By using an open access network model, LREMC has been able to solicit a contract with Connected Investments, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Calix customer HTC of Conway, SC (see "Horry Telephone Cooperative selects Calix as GPON FTTP supplier"). Connected Investments will be doing business as Bluewave Communications and plans to offer voice, video, and high-speed data services to subscribers connected to the LREMC fiber to the premises (FTTP) network.

"In order to run the internal systems we use as an electric cooperative, we had built a fiber backbone network some years ago," said Jeff Jackson, director of information technology at LREMC. "As the broadband stimulus program launched, we decided to expand that network to bring broadband to an area that was underserved and significantly grow our network to more than 500 miles of fiber. In working with Calix and HTC, who have a long history of working together, we have been able to deliver on the intent of the stimulus program and extend the reach of broadband to members and non-members alike in Robeson County."

"In working with a number of electric cooperatives in recent years as they roll out fiber networks in some of the most underserved areas of the country, it is clear that their commitment to meeting the needs of their members is their number one priority," said John Colvin, Calix senior vice president of North American sales. "Lumbee River Electric Membership Corporation is another great example of an electric cooperative that found an innovative way to bring broadband service to its area by partnering with another service provider. As the FCC opens new avenues for electric cooperatives to address the broadband needs of consumers in underserved markets, we are excited to see this great example of utilities and telcos working together to bring the promise of broadband to the residents of Robeson County."

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