Thursday, September 30, 2010

Digital Bridge Wins $2.63 Million in USDA Broadband Funds for Mississippi

EVP Wallace Says DBC Looks Ahead to New USDA Funding 09/30/2010 San Francisco UPDATE at 6:00 PM (EDT) - Kicking off today's final roll out of awards under the Obama Administration's broadband stimulus program is a $2.63 grant / loan package to the Digital Bridge Corporation (DBC) for a wireless network build in northern Mississippi.  All of today's awards are being issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Utilities Service (RUS). 

"This $2.63 million award will allow The Digital Bridge Corporation to bring affordable, fourth-generation broadband services to rural portions of Panola and Quitman Counties lacking high-speed access," according to press release of this morning from the Office of U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack.  "The network stands to benefit approximately 18,200 people, more than 1,300 businesses, and 87 community institutions where 74 percent of the premises are without high-speed access. The project will cover 191 square miles. In addition to the six jobs created or retained, the company estimates this project will create, it will provide a foundation for economic growth and job creation for decades to come."

DBC's Wallace Applauds Award, Ramps for New USDA Investments
"This is great news for the 18,000 Mississippi residents and 1,300 businesses who will experience the benefits of  4G mobile broadband when we deploy over the next 6-9 months," said William Wallace, the Co-founder and Executive Vice Presient of the company. "This award comes after DBC received one other RUS round 2 award in Indiana and three NTIA round 1 awards in Idaho--reflecting support by both agencies for WiMAX, a proven 4G technology that is deployed rapidly and maximizes the number of households receiving broadband per network dollar."

Looking ahead to the future of federal rural telecom support now that the stimulus funding has been awarded, Wallace said, "We will be applying for additional funding near our existing markets through RUS Farm Bill and other economic development programs."

Good News for WiMAX Gear Maker Alvarion
Sources have confirmed for that today's announcement is a simultaneous win for Alvarion, Ltd. (NASDAQ: ALVR) the WiMAX gear maker headquartered in Tel Aviv with extensive U.S. operations. Alvarion has issued prior announcements of its supply agreements with DBC. 
In a USDA statement, having nothing specifically to do with Digital Bridge, that has been appended to all award announcements following the "clawback" of the only award under the $7.2 billion program, a funding rescission triggered by the reporting of this publication, "Funding is contingent upon the recipient meeting the terms of the loan, grant or loan/grant agreement." 

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