C Spire is ramping up an unprecedented growth project with a $1 billion investment over the next three years– the largest capital spend in company history – to accelerate the deployment of ultra-fast 5G wireless technology and all-fiber Gigabit broadband internet in key parts of its service area in the southeastern U.S.
The project will result in faster delivery of 5G wireless technology in Mississippi markets and provide ultra-fast, all-fiber broadband services to over 200,000 homes and businesses by 2025 in Mississippi and Alabama, where the diversified telecommunications and technology services firm recently expanded its broadband internet availability.
When completed, the project is expected to bring all-fiber infrastructure to within 1,000 feet of half of Mississippi’s residential premises, deliver game-changing 5G service – the next generation of mobility – to nearly 600 sites representing over 60% of the state and expand next-generation, ultra-fast broadband services to over two dozen Alabama markets.
“We have a strong reputation of providing world-class products and services to consumers and businesses and this investment signals that we intend to deliver these benefits faster than ever before,” said C Spire CEO Hu Meena, noting that the firm will make the initial investment in three years with another $500 million in capital spending over a five-year period.
Meena said the investment is expected to result in fiber within reach for half of all Mississippians – a record for the Southeast and 12th best in the U.S. – and millions of dollars in secondary economic benefits for both states through contracts and agreements with firms who will help C Spire with the massive infrastructure deployment and construction efforts.
“I’m thrilled to see that C Spire is investing so much to build out its high-speed internet infrastructure to support the future of education, health care, technology, and small business in Mississippi,” said U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Mississippi. “Because we live in a digital world, better, faster internet connections are critical to keeping our state competitive and boosting our $100 billion-plus economy,” he added.
Wicker said C Spire’s commitment to rapidly deploying 5G fast service means that virtually every major part of Mississippi will be able to leverage the next-generation technology with the activation of more than 300 sites by the end of this year. He also praised the company for its continuing commitment to roll out more broadband in more places.
Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves said the infrastructure initiative will reap immediate dividends in a state where so many of its key priorities and initiatives rely on robust broadband technology infrastructure, including education, workforce development, health care and economic growth. “We need companies like C Spire stepping up to the plate to move our state forward.”
Business executives also expressed support for the C Spire investment initiative, including the 10,000-member Mississippi Business Council and the Mississippi Development Authority. “It is essential we close the digital divide in Mississippi,” said MEC President and CEO Scott Waller. “We wholeheartedly support efforts by C Spire to continue to develop the 5G and broadband infrastructure for a competitive 21st century economy in our state.”
“With its extensive 5G and broadband infrastructure in our state and a commitment to invest extensive capital resources on an accelerated timeframe, C Spire is well positioned to become an even more substantive contributor to the state’s emerging technology leadership,” said MDA Executive Director John Rounsaville.
Meena said C Spire plans to move quickly and aggressively in 2021 to bring the cutting-edge technology benefits to consumers and businesses in both states, leveraging several recent acquisitions, including Teklinks and Harbor Communications, to accelerate its growth and expansion efforts.