Cox Communications has cut a deal to acquire EasyTEL, a Tulsa, Okla.-based competitive local exchange carrier that delivers voice, video and data services to businesses via fiber.
Financial terms were not disclosed, but Cox said the deal will help it expand its metropolitan fiber network and improve its ability to serve commercial customers in the area. Cox said it will emerge from the deal with a network in Tulsa that covers about 95,000 fiber route miles and connects 21,000 on-net buildings.
"Cox Business and EasyTEL share the same philosophy on customer experience and technology innovation," Percy Kirk, general manager of Cox Communications Central Region, said in a statement. "We are thrilled to combine our robust fiber networks and strong commitment to service excellence to help Tulsa businesses grow and succeed with speed, reliability and the most advanced set of business services in Oklahoma."
Independent investment bank Waller Capital said it served as the exclusive financial advisor to Cox on the acquisition.
The Cox/EasyTEL deal comes about a year after the FCC agreed to forebear a rule that made it extraordinarily difficult for cable operators to buy CLECs as they looked to flesh out business services strategies. They can now do so without having to cut through a web of red tape, establishing harmony with a rule that already allowed CLECs to acquire cable operators in the same local market without enduring massive regulatory headaches.
Before the FCC streamlined that rule, Comcast had to go through the trouble of securing a waiver before it could complete its acquisition of Chicago-area CLEC Cimco Communications in 2010.
Waller Capital served as exclusive financial adviser to Cox Communications in the transaction.