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Wednesday
Sep172014

Small Business, Broadband and Tom Wheeler

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler will testify before the House Small Business Committee today. According to a recent FCC report, broadband and telecommunication service is essential to 97 percent of small businesses. So Chairman Wheeler’s testimony is a great opportunity to highlight the vital role that competition in the broadband market has played in boosting small business – the engine that powers the American economy.

Broadband has enabled small business to think bigger, act bigger and grow bigger.

As broadband providers upgrade their networks to the latest IP technologies, competition is the best way to ensure that small businesses continue to reap these benefits.  Competition has brought new innovations to market –such as VOIP, Ethernet and the Cloud.

In our recent Broadband Innovation paper, Driving Small Business Forward, we focus on the 27.9 million small businesses in the United States. While individually small, these businesses are aggressive adopters of new broadband services, and big IT spenders. From investing in cloud solutions to creating telework opportunities, small businesses are at the forefront of business broadband innovations.

In fact, small firms that adopt broadband and internet services are the fastest growing segment of the small and medium sized business market. They spend $293 billion of the $326 billion spent annually on IT budgets. It’s an investment in reliable, scalable broadband that allows small and medium sized businesses to be the growth engines of our economy.

At the Library of Congress this past June, the Broadband Coalition and COMPTEL launched Customers for Competition and paid tribute to the 1996 Telecommunications Act that unleashed a wave of competition. At the event, one of our highlighted customers, Pantheon Software, detailed how building a fiber line to their small business helped propel future growth while reducing costs.

Today, this same wave of competition continues to bring choice, better customer service and affordable offerings to small businesses across the nation. We look forward to hearing even more examples from Chairman Wheeler today.