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NoaNet and COS Systems Partner to Support Mason PUD 3 in Major Fiber Expansion

Mason PUD 3 provides broadband access to over 1 000 households in addition to businesses, anchor institutes and their own facilities on their open-access fiber optic network. This summer, the PUD (Public Utility District) ramped up their network expansion by offering their customers a favorable amortization plan to recover the installation costs, thereby not restricting residents from signing up due to high initial expenses. To stay within budget and optimize the order of build out they turned to NoaNet  for support in demand aggregation. By utilizing the COS Service Zones platform NoaNet offers this in partnership with COS Systems.

Shelton, WA – Mason County is nestled in the rural southeast corner of the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State. Like most rural communities, residents are clamoring for better broadband. Since 2000, Mason PUD 3 has been extending its open-access, nondiscriminatory fiber optic network to various regions of its service territory.

Besides serving its own facilities, PUD 3’s network reaches over 1,000 businesses, homes, and anchor institutions.

Recently computed PUD 3 customer surveys showed that slow speeds, high costs, or unavailable service were frustrating shortcomings for those who live in the more rural areas of Mason County.

“PUD staff was happy with the clarity the survey provided,” said Justin Holzgrove, Mason PUD 3 telecommunications & community relations manager. “A large number of county residents wanted PUD fiber connections. We are good at what we do: providing reliable fiber service that retail service providers can use to deliver high quality broadband services.”

In July, 2017 Mason PUD 3 commissioners approved a “Fiberhood Program,” designed to expand access to PUD 3’s fiber optic network for gigabit speed broadband service. Holzgrove added, “This program is a milestone in the history of PUD 3.”

To save money and improve the effectiveness of network extensions, the PUD turned to the Northwest Open Access Network (NoaNet) for support in demand aggregation. Because NoaNet uses the COS Service Zones platform it offered its use in partnership with COS.

PUD 3’s “Fiberhood” process identifies potential neighborhoods that are unserved or underserved by broadband providers. Among other factors, expansion of service is based on a guaranteed level of customer commitment to obtain service from the fiber optic network. Cost recovery for the project comes through a monthly “construction adder fee” paid back over 12 years. As a public utility, it is PUD 3’s intent to recover costs, not create a profit.

“A demand aggregation campaign to secure a commitment for connections was based on two components,” said Holzgrove.  “First, we can ensure that we are investing in areas with demand and commitment. Connecting areas with great initial take-rates, means revenue to fund continuous deployment. Second, many residents are clamoring for faster and more reliable Internet connection. Building first, where most people want it and will commit for it, is fair.”

Mason PUD 3 is a founding member of NoaNet. The PUD sought NoaNet’s support in setting up the demand aggregation campaign.

“Kitsap PUD, another one of our forming members, has had positive experiences using COS System’s software,” said Angela Bennink, communications and outreach director at NoaNet. “We recently initiated a partnership to broaden NoaNet offerings to include demand aggregation and Open Access network operations. In cooperation with the COS experts we are happy to support Mason PUD 3 with the software and support they need to quickly launch their demand aggregation campaign.”

“At COS we are very excited to be a part of this project,” said Bjorn Wannman, COS systems manager of partnerships and strategic accounts. “Mason PUD 3 has a confirmed need for better broadband in their area, and a very attractive offer to their subscribers. I am positive it will be a great success, especially with such an experienced partner as NoaNet by their side.”

About Mason PUD3

Mason PUD 3 serves over 34,000 electric customers in Mason County, Washington. PUD 3 also runs a wholesale fiber optic telecommunications network, which supports the operation of its electricity system. For more information see www.pud3.org/fiberhood. For the COS Service Zones campaign platform, visit www.pud3.servicezones.net.

About NoaNet

Northwest Open Access Network (NoaNet) is a wholesale only telecommunications provider. With a world that is becoming ever more digital, it is critical for communities to have access to high quality telecommunications technology that is affordable. We engage our mission to serve as a platform provider for the State by consistently looking for new opportunities to expand in Washington in meaningful ways that bridge the digital divide. Our goal is to be innovative and meet the changing needs of the Washington community. For additional information, see http://www.noanet.net.

NoaNet was formed in 2000 as a non-profit corporation by a number of Public Utility Districts in Washington State in order to provide access to high speed broadband statewide. They currently offer fiber related services and operate a fiber ring spanning thousands of miles throughout the entire State of Washington allowing the forming PUD’s, but also private providers and municipalities to connect to the backbone to serve areas where high speed broadband was often not previously available.

About COS Systems

COS SYSTEMS is a leading provider of software to plan, deploy and manage modern broadband networks that support services from one or more providers, using a powerful yet simple self-service interface. COS Systems takes customer needs and delivers innovative software solutions that streamline operations, accelerate revenue and deliver more satisfied subscribers. Learn more about COS Systems on www.cossystems.com.

For additional information, contact:

Justin Holzgrove
Telecommunications & Community Relations Manager
Mason PUD 3
+1 (360) 432-5323
justinh@masonpud3.org
www.pud3.org

Angela Bennink
Communications and Outreach Director
NoaNet
+1 (360) 271-3425
angela.bennink@noanet.net
www.noanet.net

Isak Finér
Chief Marketing Officer
COS Systems
+46 737 51 99 38
isak.finer@cossystems.com
www.cossystems.com

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COS Systems Customer Skekraft.net Announced the Best City Network in Sweden 2017

Skekraft Best City Network - COS Systems

The Swedish Local Fibre Alliance is a non-profit trade association for network owners. It was established in 1998 and has about one hundred open access muni networks as members. At their annual conference, they announced Skekraft as the Best City Network in Sweden 2017.

Skelleftea Kraft Fiber Network (Skekraft.net) started their fiber deployment in the early 2000’s. After being a single provider themselves for the first years, they took the decision in 2009 to migrate over to an Open Access model. The positive effects from bringing in competition was immediate and today they have 11 providers offering Gigabit speed Internet, IP phone services, TV services as well as triple play packages on their network. With an abundance of providers and services to choose from and thus very competitive prices, they are boasting very impressive take-rates. They reach almost all of Skelleftea, a city with 33 000 residents, and a few of the larger surrounding villages, but are now expanding further out into the rural parts of the county they serve.

”In Skelleftea the city network has had the courage to try new approaches to increase the quality of their network. By organizationally separating the daily network operations from the group responsible for the network expansions with great success, Skelleftea Kraft proves that it’s not only about building networks, but also about operating them in a manner ensuring that the highest quality standards are met”, says Jorgen Svardh, Chairman of the Swedish Local Fibre Alliance, when announcing the winners.

 

“At COS Systems we are very proud that one of our first customers has been awarded this prestigious title. Ever since 2010 we’ve provided them with our BSS/OSS solution COS Business Engine to support them in their Open Access network operations. During these years we’ve seen their take-rate increase greatly and the ever improving financial figures they present makes your jaw drop, especially when considering that the prices of services on their network are among the lowest in Sweden as well as globally. We are also very pleased that we are part of their expansion process with COS Service Zones, helping them to generate and aggregate demand for fiber prior to deployment and thereby enabling them to build out their network where they will have the best ROI,” says COS Systems CMO Isak Finer.

 

“A well-deserved recognition for a fantastic job being done not just today, but every single day of the year. Our warmest congratulations to Skekraft!“ concludes Peter Lidstrom, CEO of COS Systems.

About COS Systems

COS Systems delivers cloud-hosted software to plan, build, and operate broadband networks globally.

COS Service Zones allows network builders to draw competing zones, or “Fiberhoods,” across their city and see real-time demand grow as customers sign up using branded websites. Once target take-rates are reached, the networks are deployed backed by committed customers and secured revenue. COS Service Zones delivers subscriber-backed, successful broadband networks, and no more failed projects.

COS Business Engine is a proven network management solution, supporting both single provider and Open Access Networks. Subscribers buy their Internet services from an online marketplace, which increases take rates, ARPU, and customer satisfaction, as the network owner can offer 24/7 availability, while reaching maximum operations efficiency, thanks to the extensive use of self-service solutions.

COS Systems takes customer needs and creates innovative software solutions that streamline customers’ business processes, boost sales and profitability, and create satisfied customers.

For additional information, contact:

Isak Finér
Chief Marketing Officer
COS Systems
+46 737 51 99 38
isak.finer@cossystems.com
www.cossystems.com

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Kitsap PUD Signs Agreement to Manage Open Access Network with COS Business Engine

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Paul Avis – Superintendent of Telecom Kitsap PUD and Bjorn Wannman – COS Systems

Washington Utility Expands Cooperation with COS Systems From Aggregating Demand for Fiber Using COS Service Zones to Also Managing Their Network And Subscribers Using Business and Operations Support System COS Business Engine

KITSAP COUNTY, Washington – KPUD (Kitsap Public Utility District) has been using COS Systems’ demand aggregation software COS Service Zones to survey the county, create community engagement and understand the desire for the deployment of a utility owned fiber optic network connecting the residents with gigabit speeds.

“We know there is a need for better broadband in our community, and after all positive responses we’ve received in COS Service Zones, we are confident that investing in high-speed broadband network expansion is necessary for our community, “ said Bob Hunter, General Manager at KPUD.

KPUD is one of 28 Public Utility Districts in Washington who have jointly built a fiber ring reaching almost every corner of the State and KPUD has continued to expand their fiber backbone within the county.

“With our extensive fiber backbone we are flexible in where we can deploy to residents, however, we need to understand where there is need and demand. Our approach using COS Service Zones splits the county up into small buildable neighborhood zones where we will set a target number of people to sign up in each neighborhood. If there are no technical difficulties, as zones reach the target we will extend our network in the order that is most cost effective and which will bring fiber first to those who want or need it most. At the same time this approach ensures that we deploy where we have a reasonable business case. We plan to spend our money wisely, “ said Hunter.

When moving into the residential market KPUD will do it with an Open Access model, which means they will provide the infrastructure while the services will be delivered by independent service providers, driving competition to the good of the residents.

“If you’re not happy with your current service, just go to the web portal and pick a new provider, “comments Paul Avis, Superintendent of Telecom at KPUD.

In broadband, Open Access is almost synonymous with Sweden where fiber networks have been deployed on big scale since the 90´s and where this model is dominating the market.

“Since we’re doing Open Access we found it natural to choose a partner who has been doing this on the most established market in the world for 10 years, “ Said Avis.

“The complexity in network operations increases dramatically when you open it up for multiple providers, but with the right system you can actually increase your efficiency. It’s all about ensuring a high data quality with built in validations and keeping track of all the moving parts, which our system COS Business Engine does extremely well, “ said Bjorn Wannman, International Business Developer at COS Systems.

The system is planned to be launched to the public in September, when residents in connected areas will be able to go to the website and shop for their Internet services as easy as buying apps on the Appstore.

“We have a big number of COS Service Zones customers in the US, but for us it’s a very important milestone when we now bring our network management solution to the market. We hope and believe our long experience in Open Access and our system COS Business Engine will play a significant role in their success as KPUD now moves into the FTTH (Fiber-To-The-Home) arena,” said Isak Finér, Chief Marketing Officer at COS Systems.

About COS Business Engine
COS Business Engine is a proven network management solution, supporting both single-provider and open-access networks. Subscribers buy their Internet services from an online marketplace, which increases take rates, ARPU, and customer satisfaction, as the network owner can offer 24/7 availability, while reaching maximum operations efficiency, thanks to the extensive use of self-service solutions.

About COS Systems

COS SYSTEMS is a leading provider of software to plan, deploy and manage modern broadband networks that support services from one or more providers, using a powerful yet simple self-service interface. COS Systems takes customer needs and delivers innovative software solutions that streamline operations, accelerate revenue and deliver more satisfied subscribers. Learn more about COS Systems on www.cossystems.com.

About Kitsap PUD

Kitsap Public Utility District (KPUD ) is a municipal corporation in Washington State with incorporated boundaries parallel to Kitsap County. Our mission is building and strengthening communities through utility services. We are proud to be connecting residents of Kitsap County to each other, to local government, and to the world.

For additional information, contact:

Isak Finér
Chief Marketing Officer
COS Systems AB
+46-737 51 99 38
isak.finer@cossystems.com
www.cossystems.com

Paul Avis
Superintendent of Telecom
Kitsap PUD
(360) 626-7731
paul@kpud.org
www.kpud.org

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COS Service Zones shows public utility where to invest

kpud

 

Kitsap Public Utility District uses demand aggregation tool to validate demand before investing public funds in fiber infrastructure.

KITSAP COUNTY, Washington – Little more than a year ago, residents started informally inquiring with the Kitsap Public Utility District (KPUD) to explore whether the PUD could provide internet infrastructure, rather than relying on traditional telecom and cable providers who were not meeting the needs of this rural, mountainous region within commuting distance of Seattle.

“Kitsap PUD has been providing services to Anchor Institutions in Kitsap County for 15 years.  Recently residents have been inquiring on how they obtain access to this fiber to have quality and reliable high-speed broadband services at their homes,” recalled KPUD Superintendent of Telecom Paul Avis. “It has only been in the last year, with the FCC discussing open internet and Google Fiber, that we saw the extent of how unhappy residents were with their current services.” Case in point, “I live less than a half-mile from town,” Avis said, “and get less than 1 Mbps of service over a copper DSL line. Many residents can’t get any service at all.”

“As a government agency, we can’t rely on anecdotal data since we need to be responsible with public funds,” said Bob Hunter, General Manager at KPUD. “What’s most appealing with COS Service Zones is that it enables us to let the gathering and push of interest to come from the citizens. We want to be sure the residents are driving this.” COS Service Zones provides an effective framework for residents who are rallying for better service to have a greater role in gaining better Internet faster: “The system is very well designed and able to handle all the data and capture answers to the questions we have. Are people happy with current services? Where is the need? Do they want services from the PUD?” Hunter said. “The Champions aspect of Service Zones is going to be integral to our success: Not just in gathering information but in getting service to the residents.  The champions are able to explaining how it all works on a peer-to-peer basis, enabling PUD staffing to stay unchanged.”

“COS Service Zones enables the PUD to identify areas of need and want for open access telecommunications services and directs us to which neighborhoods to connect first, “ Avis said. “Because COS Systems’ technology enables self-service, once we’re deployed, we’ll be able to expand and continue to serve customers with minimal additional costs,” Avis said, describing the intent to continue working with the COS suite of products managing the day-to-day operations of the open-access network with COS Business Engine.

“If how COS Systems got involved is any indication,” notes COS’s Head of International Business Development Bjorn Wannman, “then it’s reasonable to expect that there is significant demand in Kitsap County. My first contact with this inspiring project was actually with a Kitsap resident, as a grassroots effort, who suggested we at COS connect with KPUD. This underscores the power of the community and its ability to engage; this is the very foundation of COS Service Zones.”

COS Chief Marketing Officer Isak Finér adds, “This is one of the most promising big-scale open-access projects in the US right now. They already have the backbone fiber infrastructure in the ground, and they know there is a great demand among the residents. With the right tool now in their hands to aggregate this demand and guide them to where they can confidently deploy to already committed customers, I’m positive this project will get a flying start and be a long-term success bringing new jobs and a higher quality of life to Kitsap County residents.”

About COS Service Zones

“Build it, and they will come?” Now, there’s a better way to roll-out fiber – with committed customers. No more deploying from one end of town to the other – then chasing customers.

  1. Draw multiple competing zones across your city or town.
  2. See demand build in real-time as customers signup using your branded website.
  3. Deploy, once target take rate is reached, to accelerate profitability.

Our mission: Subscriber-backed, successful fiber, and no more failed projects. COS Service Zones brings broadband to homes all across the globe. Let’s discover the demand in your community.

About COS Systems

COS SYSTEMS is a leading provider of software to plan, deploy and manage modern broadband networks that support services from one or more providers, using a powerful yet simple self-service interface. COS Systems takes customer needs and delivers innovative software solutions that streamline operations, accelerate revenue and deliver more satisfied subscribers.  Learn more about COS Systems on www.cossystems.com.

About Kitsap PUD

Kitsap Public Utility District (KPUD) is a municipal corporation in Washington State with incorporated boundaries parallel to Kitsap County. Our mission is building and strengthening communities through utility services.  We are proud to be connecting residents of Kitsap County to each other, to local government, and to the world.

Isak Finér
Chief Marketing Officer
COS Systems AB
+46-737 51 99 38
isak.finer@cossystems.com
cossystems.com

Paul Avis
Superintendent of Telecom
Kitsap PUD
(360) 626-7731
Paul@KPUD.org
KPUD.org