The very public trials and tribulations of their parent company notwithstanding, Adelphia Business Solutions is trumpeting some initial success as leader of a program to network Pennsylvania state government offices and agencies. ABS, the business services spin-off of troubled parent Adelphia Communications, leads a consortium of 13 companies in a project to bring high-bandwidth voice, data, Internet and video networking to Pennsylvania state agencies, including Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education.
ABS announced that the consortium had completed more than 80 percent of the transitions to the new Keystone Communications network, which when completed, will consist of more than 5,000 miles of fiber cable criss-crossing Pennsylvania. The unique municipality network is scheduled for completion by the end of 2002, and the consortium appears well within striking distance of that goal with much of the network already complete.
Aside from providing broadband connectivity to the hundreds of government, municipal and state-run colleges and universities, the Keystone Communications project aims to extend the advanced communications network to other underserved rural and urban areas in the process. Similar public infrastructure initiatives exist in Michigan, Missouri, California and Colorado.
However, for spin-off ABS, this bit of positive news is overshadowed by lingering concerns over its own ability to operate as a separate entity. Perhaps foreshadowing similar fortunes of its parent company, Adelphia Business Solutions filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection back in March, and has been working on a financial restructuring ever since. A few weeks ago, ABS announced a deal with Beal Capital Markets of Plano, Texas to secure a $15 million secured debtor-in-possession credit facility, which should allow ABS to continue operations in 35 company-owned markets in the eastern U.S. and in 17 company-managed markets scattered across the country.