Cogent Secures Big Bucks for Buildout

Cogent Communications Inc. Monday
raised $90 million in second-round funding to continue its fiber optic
network expansion plan.

Combined with its first-round investments and a $280 million contract with
Cisco Systems Inc., Cogent has secured
nearly $400 million in its efforts to offer 100 megabits per second
Internet access speeds nationwide.

Dave Schaeffer, Cogent chief executive officer, said the funding would help
keep operations going until the network is completed.

“We are extremely pleased with the quality of sponsorship we have
received,” Schaeffer said. “This second-round funding enables Cogent to
expedite the rollout and expansion of its next-generation network and
provides the means to ensure we have the highest quality team supporting
the process.”

In March, Cogent contracted with Cisco to build a
network utilizing its OC-192 backbone to create an end-to-end, all-optical
network reaching across 13 U.S. cities including New York, San Francisco
and Dallas.

Because the backbone is completely owned by Cogent, users do not have to
share traffic with other IP traffic. Cisco provides all the technology
used in the network. Officials said the network would allow customers to
experience connection times 100 times faster than T-1 connection, at a
lower price.

Kevin Kennedy, Cisco senior vice president of service provider line of
business, said the network setup means savings for its customers.

“This all optical, IP architecture will drive down the cost per megabit
delivered, by more than 100 times over traditional telecommunications
networks,” Kennedy said.

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