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Shentel completes network upgrade/customer migration

Posted 6 October 2017 5:08 PM by Shentel

On Sept. 30, Shentel completed upgrade of the former nTelos network from 3G to 4G LTE, along with the migration of former nTelos customers to the Sprint billing system.  This completes the transformation of the former nTelos wireless service area, acquired by Shentel in May 2016, to the Sprint Affiliate model in 17 months, a full quarter ahead of schedule.  

Shentel committed $240 million for the initial network upgrade and coverage expansion.  As of September 30, Shentel has upgraded 854 sites to 4G LTE, added 800 MHz coverage and capacity; decommissioned 99 overlapping sites; and added 2.5GHz capacity to 197 sites.   As planned, Shentel will have built 60% of the 220 additional coverage sites in West Virginia and southern Virginia by year end 2017, with the remaining 40% to be built in 2018. By the end of 2018, Shentel will have the largest 4G LTE wireless coverage area in its West Virginia and southern Virginia Affiliate area.

 Shentel completed the migration of the nTelos prepaid customers to the Sprint billing system in December 2016. The Company migrated postpaid customers in 2016 and 2017, completing the process on September 30. The Company is pleased to have migrated approximately 65% of the prepaid and 73% of the postpaid former nTelos customers to Sprint, while at the same time having rebuilt the entire acquired network.

On this milestone, President and CEO Chris French commented: "I am extremely proud of our employees' accomplishments in transforming the former nTelos wireless network into the state-of-the-art 4G LTE network our Sprint customers can enjoy today. They were able to complete the project on budget and ahead of schedule, allowing us to take full advantage of the fourth quarter selling season.  The Company has launched the biggest advertising campaign in its history touting the new and expanded network."

 The Company will provide additional details in its upcoming third quarter earnings call.