C Spire acquires Birmingham-based Teklinks, making the enterprise service provider 5 times bigger

Bham Now C Spire
Bham Now C Spire
Photo courtesy of C Spire

The nation’s largest regional wireless network operator is acquiring Birmingham’s Teklinks, the highly regarded and rapidly growing resell, cloud, managed and professional services provider company.

Bham Now C Spire
Photo courtesy of C Spire

C Spire is a Ridgeland, Mississippi-based company that offers wireless; home Internet and TV; business and cloud services. The company’s business services include enterprise-grade technology solutions for IP voice, dedicated Internet access, wireless 4G LTE and a suite of cloud-based services, according to C Spire.

Bham Now Teklinks
Photo courtesy of Teklinks

The terms of the deal between the two privately-owned companies were not disclosed, but C Spire expects to complete the deal within the next 60-90 days. The acquisition will position the company to deliver and control an end-to-end, consumption-based IT platform for both wired and wireless, according to an exclusive article in CRN.

Bham Now Teklinks
Photo courtesy of Teklinks

Teklinks was founded in 2001 and is a nationally recognized service provider with operations in three southeastern states: Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee. Many of its eight offices operate in fast growth markets in the Southeast including Birmingham, Huntsville and Nashville. The company is one of only 16 firms ranked among the top cloud service providers  and has completed a successful growth and acquisition phase and deeper expansion into segments of healthcare and financial services sectors according to a press release.

Bham Now Teklinks
Photo courtesy of Teklinks

Teklinks bought Nashville-based Guidant Partners, a leading managed services firm in 2016, and in 2015 it acquired fast-growing cloud services player Claris Networks, based in Knoxville, Tennessee. The company also merged with healthcare provider ClinicAnywhere in 2013.  Cellular South changed its name to C Spire seven years ago in order to diversify into other segments in the market including enterprise IT services.

Bham Now C Spire
Photo courtesy of C Spire

“We’re excited about becoming part of a company that shares our long tradition of passionate focus on superior customer service, “best in class” IT expertise, and the delivery of outstanding services,” said TekLinks President Don Monistere.  “With this combination, C Spire is poised to lead the next wave of professional and managed IT services for companies.”

Bham Now C Spire
Photo courtesy of C Spire

This move is seen as bold by most in the industry and will make it easier for customers to choose from a wide-array of services including: voice, data, and the distribution and management of their content according to the report.  Steven Bye, president and CEO of C Spire stated in the interview with CRN that this deal will allow C Spire to grow quicker and provide customers with an end to end solution from the desktop to the cloud.

Bham Now C Spire
Photo courtesy of C Spire

In addition, the deal makes the combined company the top end to end IT enterprise services provider in the Southeast with over 500 services professionals, four owned and operated data centers with space in others, and 8,000 miles of fiber network serving business customers, according to CRN.

Bham Now Teklinks
Photo courtesy of Teklinks

“What this really does is allow us to provide the entire spectrum of services to the customer: voice, data, applications and the distribution and management of their content,” Bye said. “We can now deliver a full suite of services from desktop support all the way through networking and the performance and high availability of applications that ride across that. We clearly bring a lot of networking experience and TekLinks brings a lot of capabilities in the enterprise infrastructure business as well as the cloud.”

Bham Now Teklinks
Photo courtesy of Teklinks

Monistere will maintain a significant leadership role in C Spire after completion of the merger integration process as General Manager of C Spire Business Solutions.

“In pursuing this transaction, it quickly became evident that the two companies were very much aligned in terms of team culture and strategic focus. I am incredibly excited about the future of the combined teams,” said TekLinks CEO Jim Akerhielm.

Bham Now Teklinks
Photo courtesy of Teklinks

Last fall, C Spire launched an initiative to bring fiber-based 1 Gbps fiber-based ultra high-speed internet access to up to 250,000 small and medium-sized businesses in Mississippi.  The company continues to expand its voice, data, managed and cloud services for government agencies and private businesses and operates several Uptime Institute-certified data centers.

Bham Now Teklinks
Photo courtesy of TekLinks

The CRN article further states that the acquisition comes even as as larger rivals like AT&T, which is acquiring Time Warner in a blockbuster $85.4 billion deal, are focusing on media content at what some call the expense of their foundational connectivity and networking services for enterprise customers.