Lexent Metro Acquired by Lightower Fiber

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Massachusetts-based metro fiber provider Lightower Fiber Networks is acquiring Lexent Metro Connect, a leading provider of custom built dark fiber networks in the New York market, the companies announced this morning. The deal allows Lightower to expand its existing fiber footprint and customer base in New York City and northern New Jersey, where the growth of low-latency trading by Wall Street firms has driven demand for fiber routes.
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The addition of Lexent will add over 150 fiber route miles and over 200 commercial buildings to Lightower’s growing network, including low latency routes between critical New York City and New Jersey financial exchanges and data centers (which we featured last week).

“We continue to see increasing demand for fiber-based networking and connectivity solutions throughout the greater New York City region,” said Lightower President and CEO Rob Shanahan. “Lexent’s network is the premier fiber network in New York City with the most density. It is a natural fit for expanding Lightower’s reach in the region. Lexent’s network also offers many fiber routes that are optimized for ultra low latency solutions to the financial and media industries.”

“The acquisition of Lexent by Lightower further validates our commitment and singular focus on becoming the New York region’s leading provider of underlying, truly neutral fiber optic network infrastructure,” said Ray La Chance, President and CEO of Lexent Metro Connect. “In addition, we couldn’t be more pleased with Lightower’s decision to acquire our business and we looking forward to continuing our role as an underlying enabler in support of Lightower’s expansion throughout the region.”

Lightower’s current network is comprised of over 4,600 fiber route miles throughout Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York including New York City. The Lexent network includes 150 route miles of fiber throughout New York City and New Jersey.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to close in Q4 2010. Lightower Fiber Networks is backed by M/C Venture Partners, Pamlico Capital, and Ridgemont Equity Partners. GE Capital Markets and SunTrust Robinson Humphrey have committed to provide the required debt capital for the acquisition and will serve as Joint Bookrunners. GE Capital is acting as Administrative Agent.

The Bank Street Group LLC served as the exclusive financial advisor to Lexent Metro Connect for this transaction. Lexent Metro Connect is privately held.

About the Author

Rich Miller is the founder and editor-in-chief of Data Center Knowledge, and has been reporting on the data center sector since 2000. He has tracked the growing impact of high-density computing on the power and cooling of data centers, and the resulting push for improved energy efficiency in these facilities.

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