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Q&A: How Craighead Electric Cooperative Corporation deployed their fiber network 55% ahead of schedule

Craighead Electric Cooperative Corporation (CECC), founded in 1937, is an electric utility distributing power to eight counties in rural Northeast Arkansas, USA. Their mission is to responsibly deliver reliable, high-quality services to their 30,000 members at the lowest possible price. In 2017, CECC initiated a $110 million project to modernize their grid with a communications network that will be leased to CECC’s wholly owned subsidiary, ‘empower’, providing desperately needed high-speed broadband services across the community. The project, delivered in partnership with Irby Utilities, will roll out close to 5,000 miles of fiber optic cable across rural Arkansas.

We sat down with CECC’s Fiber Assets Manager, Jeremiah Sloan to talk through the project and understand how Render is helping them achieve a 55% reduction in production timelines while significantly reducing construction costs.

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Digital Network Construction: The future of fiber network deployment

Our collective appetite for data and bandwidth is seemingly insatiable, and according toCisco, the trend is set to continue with data consumption and broadband speeds globally set to double by 2021. Such demands have already validated the business case for 5G networks, which will itself accelerate data consumption rates and unleash unprecedented potential to build digital ecosystems and further connect the way we live, work, and communicate.