New Windsor, NY – November 13, 2023 – Wireless 20/20, LLC (www.wireless2020.com),a broadband network consulting group and developer of the industry-leading WiROI™ Broadband Networks Business Case Analysis Tools, today announced the availability of a WiROI™ Fiber Business Case Analysis Tool. Their Fiber ROI tool was developed to analyze the technical and financial aspects of deploying Fiber with private, as well as public, broadband grants such as Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment (BEAD) funds.
The WiROI™ Fiber Business Case Tool is a powerful complement to the WiROI™ db Geospatial SaaS Platform, offering a comprehensive analysis of CapEx, OpEx, Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), Return on Investment (ROI), and subsidy requirements for fiber deployments across the entire United States.
Wireless 20/20 has used this Fiber ROI tool to analyze the business case of building statewide fiber networks to connect all of the unserved eligible locations for BEAD funding in multiple states. The results and approach are published in a new Wireless 20/20 White Paper, which outlines a methodology for analyzing the financial merits of BEAD-funded projects. The white paper titled “Closing the Digital Divide in Vermont: A Business Case Study of BEAD”, showcases eye-opening findings about the financial and technical challenges of BEAD funded projects and outlines some best practices for bidders and state broadband agencies.
Some of the findings and suggestions are:
Statewide Fiber Mile analysis is needed to determine the cost of connecting the unserved locations.
In most states, there is not enough funding to cover the cost of fiber deployment CapEx even with 50-50 funding.
The vast majority of locations are remote and rural with densities of less than 4 homes per mile, which presents an enormous challenge for bidders even if they receive 80% subsidy.
Even if 100% of the cost to build Fiber is subsidized, the cost of operating and maintaining a network with less than 2 homes per mile is not attractive to most investors.
States must examine the business case of fiber deployment and be very selective in allocating funds to bidders who have the best chance of delivering sustainable fiber solutions.
“While BEAD funds are allocated on the basis of the number of unserved locations, the CapEx needed to serve these locations is calculated by the number of access fiber miles,” said Fred Campbell, Principal Consultant at Wireless 20/20. “With five thousand dollars of subsidy available per unserved home, broadband operators cannot ignore BEAD funding. At the same time, bidders must be extremely selective to make sure they don’t get stuck with undesirable clusters with unprofitable business cases and should look past CapEx subsidy by focusing on ROI analysis.”
“The Vermont Business Case is the first in a series of statewide WiROI™ db analyses that illustrates that BEAD funding allocated for many states may not be sufficient to bring fiber to every unserved location in every county,” said Berge Ayvazian, Senior Consultant/Analyst at Wireless 20/20. “States have to determine how to distribute BEAD funding in ways that maximize the number of unserved homes that will ultimately receive broadband access.”
Service providers who plan to apply for BEAD funding will have to examine large areas and calculate access fiber miles needed for ROI analysis. Counties, locations, and subsidy levels have to be prioritized in each application. Next-generation, fixed wireless access could provide a lower-cost complement to Fiber in closing the digital divide. Priorities and choices cannot be made effectively without detailed ROI analysis supported by accurate GIS location and fiber miles to connect the unserved grant-eligible locations.
Wireless 20/20 is also proud to announce that their WiROI™ db Geospatial SaaS Platform has been shortlisted as one of the finalists in the Best Broadband & Data Mapping Solution or Initiative category for the U.S. Broadband Awards 2023. The winners will be announced at the Awards Gala Dinner on the evening of November 16, during the inaugural U.S. Broadband Summit.
The white paper is available at: https://wireless2020.com/pr-news-events/white-papers.
Maps are available for viewing at: https://wireless2020.com/pr-news-events/maps.
An interactive dashboard with unserved locations for all states is available on the Wireless 20/20 website at: https://wireless2020.com/fabric-locations-dashboard.
About Wireless 20/20, LLC
Wireless 20/20 is a consulting firm focused on wired and wireless broadband markets. Wireless 20/20 has helped over 180 broadband operators worldwide build business cases, analyze market opportunities, complete technology and vendor selections, and develop network rollout strategies. The principals have been engaged in the broadband wireless industry since its inception and have a thorough understanding of the technical, business, and product issues surrounding the development of wireless devices, equipment, networks, and services. For more information and to schedule a private demonstration of the Wireless 20/20 WiROI™ db Geospatial SaaS Platform, please visit https://wireless2020.com/contact.
To read the release online, visit: https://www.prweb.com/releases/wireless-2020-announces-new-fiber-roi-business-case-analysis-tool-and-case-study-white-paper-301985735.html
WiROI™ is a trademark of Wireless 20/20, LLC.