After a short break, State of Subsea resumes with speaker Hunter Newby, CEO of Allied Fiber.  His topic of choice is the US domestic fiber infrastructure.

“I think there is a fundamental understanding that there is not enough fiber,” says Newby.  He makes it clear that fiber as it is doesn't meet demand.  For many companies, the answer to that is to buy up as much as currently exists to keep profits positive, but he states that only building more would fix the problem.

“This is the hit list, and it's only going to get smaller,” says Newby about a list of potential sellers in the US network.  XO Communications comes out far in the lead as the company most likely to be acquired in 2014.  Newby makes the point however, that the list of new companies versus potential sellers is a much shorter list, which is a problem as it suggests a lack of growth in the regional industry.

He turns the subject to the substantial “Fiber Gap” in the US.  One slide reads “the US lags behind most developed countries as far as internet speed is concerned.  Optical fiber facilities currently reach of 36.1 percent of the capacity.”

Newby then lists the four main industry challenges that are creating opportunities for companies like his own.  They are Geographical reach, growing capacity constraints, carrier controlled conflicts, and technological inefficiency.  The need for solutions to these problems are creating new opportunities in the US cable industry.