Saturday, May 27, 2000

Bell unit adds site

Broadwing is high-tech

By Mike Boyer
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Broadwing Communications, the voice and data network sister of Cincinnati Bell, this week formally opened its data co-location center at Bell's Seventh Street network operations center.

        The center, one of 11 Broadwing has announced this year, provides around-the-clock power, Internet connectivity and space for e-commerce activities of companies ranging from dot-com start-ups to corporate giants.

        Sourcing those activities in co-location centers “allows them to focus on their core business,” said Anthony A. Tomae, vice president of Internet Solutions for Broadwing Communication, the Austin, Tex.-based unit of Broadwing Inc.

        International Data Corp. estimates the market for data co-location services is expected to grow from $171 million last year to more than $1 billion by 2002.

        Broadwing doesn't plan to open its co-location center in New York until August, but it has already leased some of that space, Mr. Tomae said.

        Broadwing's facility, which has 7,500 square feet but can be expanded, is at least the third data co-location center in Cincinnati. Level 3 Communications has established a center here and developer Al Neyer Inc. is converting the former David Shoe building at Third and Plum streets, downtown, into a similar center.

        By opening eight regional data centers earlier this month, Broadwing fulfilled a commitment last year to investors by Rick Ellenberger, Broadwing CEO.

        “It normally takes 12 to 18 months to develop

        these centers, but we did it in 51/2 months,” Mr. Tomae said.

        Broadwing hasn't disclosed its investment in the facilities, which include backup power, round-the-clock access for clients, staffing and security.

        Mr. Tomae said the co-location centers are just part of Broadwing Communications' strategy to expand its presence in the Internet marketplace.

        The company, which operates a 16,000-mile fiber-optic cable network, plans to expand into other services for Internet-based businesses.

        Those services, Mr. Tomae said, include Internet hosting, backup and remote storage of a company's Internet transactions and information technology consulting that provides turnkey solutions for companies embarking on e-commerce strategies.

        Broadwing has teamed with Cisco Systems, which is providing routers and switches for its data centers.

        The other centers are in Dallas; Los Angeles; Atlanta; Salt Lake City; Boston; Austin, Texas; and Newark, Del. Besides New York, other centers will be opened in Chicago and Santa Clara, Calif., this summer.


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