A new fiber network is looking to expand into Las Vegas, bringing more high-speed internet connectivity to the city.
Gigapower LLC, a joint venture between AT&T and BlackRock, has applied to the Nevada Public Utilities Commission to operate as a telecommunications company providing “access to super-fast, reliable, high-capacity fiber.”
The venture plans to operate as a wholesale internet service provider that would sell its internet fiber operations to existing internet providers, which in turn would sell directly to customers, according to Bill Hogg, the company’s CEO. He said the company plans to offer “multi-gig speeds,” but the internet providers that Gigapower sells to would decide the actual speeds consumers get.
Hogg said Gigapower is aiming to be operational in Las Vegas “later this year.”
It first filed its PUC application and filed with the Nevada Secretary of State’s office in July 2022.
The PUC is still considering Gigapower’s application, but the company stated it wants to add Las Vegas to its operations because of the city’s sizable population and its high number of annual visitors, according to a news release.
A Gigapower spokesperson said the company is focusing its operations on the city of Las Vegas and not other areas in Southern Nevada.
“We have big plans to deploy multi-gig fiber to many more cities across our country,” Hogg said in a statement. “Our partnerships with communities like Las Vegas and others are essential to building our fiber network and creating a commercial wholesale open access platform that will benefit consumers and businesses across the U.S.”
Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman was supportive of Gigapower coming to the city.
“Connecting Las Vegas is more important than ever,” Goodman said in a statement. “From families, students, workers, consumers, and small and large businesses, access to the latest broadband technology will elevate our community and economy, paving the way to a strong future. Additional and continuing broadband investment will ensure that Las Vegas remains at the forefront of the digital economy and is a great place to live, work, and visit.”
The addition of Gigapower could bring a second high-powered internet fiber option to Nevada, as Google Fiber announced it was expanding into the state in August 2022. There have been no announcements on which Nevada markets Google Fiber will operate in.
Gigapower is jointly owned by the AT&T and the investing and advising company BlackRock. Both companies view Gigapower as a way to expand internet access across the country.
“This investment on behalf of BlackRock’s clients will advance efforts to bridge the digital divide and spur economic growth in the communities where Gigapower operates,” BlackRock CEO Larry Fink said in a statement.
Gigapower has already started its operations in Mesa, Arizona, and plans to bring its services to two other Arizona cities: Chandler and Gilbert. It also has plans to add services to parts of Pennsylvania, Florida and Alabama, according to the release.
The PUC could issue an order on Gigapower’s application sometime in late June or early July, according to Peter Kostes, the commission’s communications director.