Barrett Xplore Inc. to provide high-speed Internet to Northumberland County



    WOODSTOCK, NB, Feb. 12 /CNW/ - Northumberland County has awarded a
broadband project contract to Barrett Xplore Inc. (BXI), through its Xplornet
brand, to provide high-speed Internet coverage to rural areas where it was
previously unavailable.
    Beginning in the spring of 2009, area residents and businesses will begin
to see significant expansion of high-speed Internet services in the region.
Expected to be completed in early 2010, the project will develop critical
infrastructure for enhanced access to the Internet.
    "Barrett Xplore Inc. is proud to be a part of this significant project
for the residents of Northumberland County," said BXI Ontario Vice President
Bob Davie. "We are committed to offering fast, reliable and affordable
high-speed Internet solutions to meet the various needs of local customers."
    Of the broadband project's estimated $3 million cost, the financial
impact for the County is anticipated to be less than $200,000 to cover related
customer outreach and project management costs. Funding of $976,833 was
obtained through the Government of Ontario's $30 million Rural Connections
Broadband Program, which was established to improve rural access to online
government services and educational and economic development opportunities not
viable through slower dial-up connections. In November 2008,
Northumberland-Quinte West MPP Lou Rinaldi announced that Northumberland
County received the full amount it requested in an application on behalf of
its municipalities months earlier. The remainder of the budget is being
contributed by the project's private sector partner, Barrett Xplore Inc..
    "We look forward to working with both our provincial and private sector
partners to ensure that high-speed Internet is a reality for all," said newly
elected Northumberland County Warden Linda Thompson. "This is an important day
for the County; efficient, reasonably priced Internet is a key service to our
residents and an essential element of our economic growth."
    Northumberland County has some unique challenges for the delivery of
high-speed Internet service. The County's rolling terrain and significant tree
cover in combination with relatively low population density have until now
discouraged capital investment by a major Internet service provider. Many
residents and businesses either have no Internet access, or are limited to
very slow dial-up connections.
    Barrett Xplore Inc. was awarded the contract based on the recommendation
of the County's Broadband Working Committee following a competitive bidding
process.

    About Barrett Xplore Inc.

    Headquartered in Woodstock, New Brunswick, Barrett Xplore Inc. operates
Xplornet Internet Services, Canada's largest rural broadband provider, with
customers and dealers in every province and territory. Barrett Xplore Inc.
aims to bridge the urban/rural digital divide by ensuring that every Canadian,
regardless of where they live, has access to broadband, thereby enabling them
to compete effectively in the global economy and gain access essential
government and educational services. www.xplornet.com





For further information:

For further information: Rick Harari, Hill & Knowlton, (416) 413-4766,
rick.harari@hillandknowlton.ca

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BARRETT XPLORE INC.

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