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Rural Cable Operators Brief FCC on Broadband Expansion

The CEOs of seven multiple system operators (MSOs) that serve rural customers and small to mid-sized markets recently briefed the FCC on efforts to deliver high-speed Internet and broadband services to rural customers and the industry's associated private risk investments. The visits were coordinated by the National Cable & Telecommunications Association.

The MSOs have or plan to roll out new broadband and digital services because of customer demand and competition from other sources. The CEOs hope to give rural and small-market customers access to the same services as people in more populated areas. The providers have invested more than a combined $492 million to bring broadband and other services to over two million homes.

Leading the executives was Richard Sjoberg, President and CEO of Sjoberg's Inc. of northwest Minnesota, who is also the chairman of the NCTA Rural/Small Operators Committee. The others were Peter Brubaker of Susquehanna Media Co.; Rocco Commisso of Mediacom LLC; Joseph Gans of Gans Multimedia Partnership; James Pearson of the U.S. Cable Corp.; Gary Shorman of Eagle Communications and Kelvin Westbrook of Millennium Digital Media.