by James Heffernan
Former nTelos wireline customers in the Shenandoah Valley have seen the light.
Lumos Networks, which nTelos Holdings Corp. was scheduled to spin off on Oct. 31, provides high-speed data, broadband, voice and Internet protocol services over a dense fiber-optic network spanning six states. The company, which will be traded on Nasdaq, has its headquarters in downtown Waynesboro. The City Council recently renamed the street where the building is located as One Lumos Plaza.
The word “Lumos” is derived from the Latin word for light or illumination. “This new brand creates a stronger identity for our wireline high-speed data, broadband, voice and IP services,” says Lumos Networks president and chief financial officer Michael B. Moneymaker. “We are excited about this change and the opportunities it presents for our customers, the communities we serve and our employees.”
While the company’s name and look have changed, “our guiding principles of doing business, most importantly customer first, have not,” he says.
Before the split, nTelos had been repositioning its 113-year-old wireline business from traditional voice access lines to high-bandwidth data products and services. As fiber-optic networks continue to penetrate rural areas, companies can bundle services for customers such as high-speed Internet, digital voice and high-definition TV, as well as fiber-to-the-home technology.
Lumos inherits a significant footprint, including a 2,200-mile, fiber-optic network in Pennsylvania bought from Allegheny Communications in 2009 and another 3,500 route miles in five states purchased from One Communications Corp. last year. Lumos now serves about 50,000 business and residential customers in Virginia and West Virginia as well as parts of Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Ohio and Maryland. Its major markets are Waynesboro, Daleville, Covington and Charleston, W.Va.
Lumos has approximately 500 employees and annual revenues of $200 million. The company offers DSL speeds of up to 6 megabits per second in places
Customers will begin to notice the Lumos brand and logo on company materials over the next few months. Customer service, rates and network coverage will not change in connection with the rebranding process.
NTelos Wireless, which offers nationwide wireless voice and data plans, will retain the nTelos name.
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