News

Neutral Connect Networks (NCN), a leading independent owner and operator of wireless communications infrastructure, announced today the purchase of DAS Communications and 5 Bars

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., JULY 6, 2017 — Neutral Connect Networks (NCN), a leading independent owner and operator of wireless communications infrastructure, announced today the purchase of DAS Communications and 5 Bars. Additionally, M/C Partners has committed up to $30 million to fund NCN’s continued expansion.

DAS, founded in 2007 by Tyler Kratz, has successfully built and continues to operate multiple wireless networks at strategic venues in Boston and New York.

5 Bars, an Irvine, California-based neutral host distributed antenna system (DAS) operator, is a leader in deploying DAS systems in the sports and entertainment sectors, with deployments in numerous large stadiums and casinos. 5 Bars’ DAS team will play an integral role in the new company.

John Clarey, 5 Bars’ former CEO, who will continue as an investor in NCN, said, “The financial commitment from NCN and M/C Partners provides 5 Bars the needed resources to continue to build and operate the large projects it has in its pipeline.” The terms of the all-cash transaction remain confidential.

NCN is also pleased to announce that it has partnered with M/C Partners, a leading, Boston-based telecommunications private equity firm, as its lead investor. “We are excited to have the opportunity to combine these two leading players in the small cell arena to create Neutral Connect,” Brian M. Clark, M/C managing partner, said. “M/C Partners has a long and successful heritage in the wireless industry, and we believe that the small cell opportunity represents a massive shift in the network architecture of mobile carriers, which we are keen to participate in.” Clark also announced the hiring of seasoned telecommunications executive Paul McGinn as CEO of the newly formed NCN.

McGinn was most recently the director of business development at Vertical Bridge and previously the CEO of CIG Wireless. He has more than 20 years of experience in the wireless industry, working with companies such as TCP Communications and SBA Communications. “This transaction brings together two complementary neutral host operators, and the combined business will have a broad geographic presence across the United States,” McGinn said.

McGinn has hired Brian Porter, former vice president of in-building at Ericsson, as the senior vice president of sales and operations for the new company. Porter has 17 years of wireless-industry experience with such companies as STI Brasil, American Tower, Fiber Tower and Spectra Site.

NCN’s combined networks will provide wireless service at such varied locales as the NRG Stadium in Houston, the Staten Island Ferry in New York, Boston’s Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway, Angel Stadium in Anaheim, Calif., and soon, the Colorado State University Stadium in Fort Collins, Colo.

About Neutral Connect Networks

Neutral Connect Networks www.neutralconnect.com is a leading independent owner and operator of wireless communications infrastructure in the United States. Its primary focus is building and operating multi-carrier neutral host DAS and small cell networks in venues and buildings throughout North America.

About M/C Partners
M/C Partners is a private equity firm focused exclusively on the communications, media, and information technology sectors. The firm has invested over $2.2 billion of capital into nearly 100 companies in those sectors. Companies M/C has backed include Cavalier Telephone, Ensono, Everstream, Fusepoint, ICG Communications, Involta, Legendary Pictures, Lightower, MetroPCS, NuVox, and Zayo Group. The firm has strong institutional backing from the nation’s leading pension funds and endowments as well as a long track record of success. M/C Partners has offices in Boston and San Francisco. For more information, visit www.mcpartners.com.

About 5 Bars
XG Communities, LLC dba 5 Bars Communities is headquartered in Irvine California. The firm is a premier provider of wireless solutions and asset marketing for cities, municipalities and large scale public venues throughout North America. 5 Bars delivers carrier friendly wireless coverage solutions including asset marketing, A&E services, DAS, ODAS, small cell, and turnkey wireless solutions.

The 5 Bars Communities division, that provides small cell wireless planning and marketing for cities, is not part of the acquisition and will continue to operate under XG Communities, LLC.
For more information, visit http://xgcommunities.com.

Contact:

Neutral Connect Networks
Paul McGinn
Chief Executive Officer
(561) 508-8225

XG Communities, LLC dba 5 Bars
John Clarey
Chief Executive Officer / Founder
949 933 1529

M/C Partners
Brian Clark
Managing Partner
(617) 345-7265

 

Irvine, California, – March 21, 2017 – 5 BARS® announced today that Alessandro Feitosa has joined 5 Bars as Vice President, Solution Engineering. Alessandro brings 15 years of experience and expertise in the sports and technology space. He has led strategic pursuits and deployments across the globe. Alessandro has been involved with the design, engineering, installation and management of high density Wi-Fi networks, including World Cup Soccer, MLB, NHL and NBA facilities as well as dozens of stadiums worldwide. Prior to joining 5 Bars, Alessandro held key technology roles at Nokia, Cisco, Juniper Networks and Ruckus Wireless.

“We are beyond thrilled to have Alessandro join the 5 Bars team,” said Monnie McGaffigan, President of 5 Bars. “His expertise in this space is second to none and anyone that has worked with Alessandro appreciates his experience and commitment to excellence.”


The Largest Livestock Show and Rodeo In The World to be ‘Cowboy Connected’ by 5 BARS

Wireless Leader Delivers Carrier-Grade Wi-Fi for the Houston  Livestock Show and Rodeo at NRG Stadium

Houston, Texas and Irvine, California – March 6, 2017 – 5 BARS® installed a state-of-the-art carrier-grade Wi-Fi network to ensure the performance required for the crowds of the largest rodeo in the world, The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, one of the City of Houston’s “signature events.”

This 20 day long event draws some of the biggest crowds and recording artists in the world. Headliners include Luke Bryan, Alan Jackson, Willie Nelson, Alicia Keys and many more. The event also features livestock auctions, a carnival and wine competitions. With total attendance of over 2 million guests, 5 Bars’ network will be supporting the heavy demand required by the Rodeo participants, fans and hundreds of volunteers.



5 BARS Resets the Wi-Fi ‘BAR’ for Wireless Data Usage & Performance During Sunday’s Super Bowl LI

 Wireless Leader’s Wi-Fi Breaks Data Record at NRG Stadium

 IRVINE, Calif., Feb. 9, 2017 – 5 BARS®, a premier provider of wireless solutions, set a new record for any single-day wireless data usage event on the Wi-Fi system installed and operating at NRG Stadium. During Super Bowl LI, the Wi-Fi system recorded data usage of 12.2 TB, exceeding last year’s record from Levi Stadium.

Overall data usage exceeded 40 TB when cellular data usage is included. Verizon reported a 57% increase over last year with 11 terabytes of cellular data usage. AT&T reported an 88% increase to 9.8 terabytes. Sprint reported a three-fold increase to 5.0 terabytes. T-Mobile reported data usage nearly twice as much as usual, with 2.1 terabytes reported last year.

5 Bars worked with the NFL, Verizon, Super Bowl Host Committee, Harris County Sports & Convention Corporation and SMG to plan, design and build the technologically advanced high density Wi-Fi network to support the specific needs of the sellout crowds at NRG Stadium for the 2017 Super Bowl. Connectivity was the top priority to ensure maximum fan interaction during the big game.

“We are beyond pleased with the performance of the network 5 Bars delivered to NRG Stadium on Sunday. The day was filled with new records and unexpected outcomes, and we are so proud to be a part of history,” said Monnie McGaffigan, President of 5 Bars. “The partnership and team work involved to bring a state of the art Wi-Fi network and exceptional experience to 77,000 fans was nothing short of herculean,” declared McGaffigan.



5 BARS Positions NRG Stadium As One of the
Most Connected Stadiums

Wireless Leader Delivers Carrier-Grade Wi-Fi for NRG Stadium

Houston, Texas and Irvine, California – January 30, 2017 – 5 BARS, a premier provider of wireless solutions, has positioned NRG Stadium as one of the most connected football stadiums today in time to support the biggest data-usage event in sports, next week’s Super Bowl LI. 5 Bars deployed a secure, reliable high density Wi-Fi network to support the heavy demand required by the team, venue and fans.

5 Bars worked with the Harris County Sports & Convention Corporation to plan, design and build the high density Wi-Fi network to meet the needs of the biggest crowds at NRG Stadium and the upcoming Super Bowl LI. Wireless connectivity is 5 Bars’ top priority to ensure fan interaction for maximum simultaneous users at the 72,000+ seat facility.

NRG Stadium and 5 Bars embarked with great success to deliver a state-of-the-art network within a very tight time line as demanded by the NFL and ensure the performance required for the big day. The high density Wi-Fi network, which was nonexistent in the past, now covers 1.9 million square feet of the stadium through the deployment of 1,250 Extreme Networks access points and switches. This publicly-accessible, fan-enhancing network allows users to be fully connected inside the stadium.

“We are proud to be part of such a high profile venue. NRG Stadium is one of the largest and busiest stadiums in the country. To be able to deliver a world-class Wi-Fi system in such a short time frame, speaks volumes about the team we were working with and the importance of the Super Bowl.” said Monnie McGaffigan, President of 5 Bars. “We are excited to see the system in full action.”



5 Bars® names Monnie McGaffigan President

Irvine, California, – January 23, 2017 – 5 BARS announced today the appointment of Monnie McGaffigan as president of the wireless solutions firm. 5 Bars is a premier provider of master wireless plans and marketing agreements for cities and municiplaities across the United States.

“We are fortunate to have such great breadth and talent within the 5 Bars team. As we begin 2017, I would like to recognize the contributions made in our organization,” said John Clarey, CEO of 5 Bars. “Monnie is a talented leader who has developed our organization into a first-class service provider, advocating for our clients to create the best wireless experience for their citizens, residents, businesses, fans and visitors.”

 

 

 

Monnie joined 5 Bars in 2015 as Senior Vice President, leading business development, carrier relations and program management in our Sports and Large Public Venues group. During her time at 5 Bars, she gained additional responsibilities leading the 5 Bars Communities division.

Monnie is an experienced customer champion, and leading the advocacy for cities in their advancement of wireless technologies was a natural fit. As a 25-year technology veteran, McGaffigan has an extensive wireless background that includes experience with carriers, cable operators, service and infrastructure providers alongside emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things. Her extensive background will accelerate the 5 Bars Communities vision.


California
Lathrop Wants to Streamline Right-of-Way Zoning by Planning Ahead

The City of Lathrop is taking preemptive measures before carriers can start laying claims to their public city right-of- way, according to the Manteca Bulletin.

The City Council last week adopted an ordinance that will incorporate a master plan for telecom development authored by 5 Bars, LLC, an independent wireless consulting firm. The plan will help “streamline the city’s future when it comes to the location, placement, and possible revenue-generating aspects of the placement of wireless communication equipment on city towers and in city rights-of-way,” said the Manteca Bulletin. The development of the wireless master plan will cost the city nothing however 5 Bars would receive 35 percent of all proceeds that come from future placement or development of wireless tower sites.

Vice Mayor Steve Dresser questioned the agreement and why the city would give up a third of the revenue if carriers contacted the city directly. However, the city attorney reminded Dresser that contractually they are obligated

to refer all inquiries to 5 Bar. The ordinance is up for final approval at a future meeting.

Inside Towers, Nov 17, 2016


Wireless Leader 5 Bars to Bring Cutting-Edge Wi-Fi and Cell Systems to Morongo Casino Resort & Spa

State-of-the-art DAS system will strengthen coverage for resort guests, redefining Morongo as both a mobile and entertainment hotspot

IRVINE, Calif., June 7, 2016 – 5 Bars™ announced today it will be building and installing a state-of-the-art multi-carrier Distributed Antenna System (DAS) for the Morongo Casino Resort and Spa in Cabazon, California.

Once the system is installed in the coming months, Morongo guests will experience a profound improvement in wireless connectivity and data speeds within the resort due to the extended reach and connectivity of the DAS.

5 Bars will design and engineer the wireless network to exceed requirements and specification parameters, to ensure Morongo guests will enjoy five bars of cellular coverage and superior cellular capacity on their smartphones across the sprawling 44 acre resort. 5 Bars is working with all the major carriers in order to drive carrier participation.

“The new 5 Bars system will ensure that our guests have continuous cell and wireless coverage with no interruptions no matter where they are in our resort so they can instantly post on Facebook, Instagram or Snapchat when they hit their next jackpot,”said John James, Chief Operating Officer at the Morongo Casino Resort & Spa. “The new 5 Bars system will further strengthen Morongo’s cell and wireless connectivity so we can continue to provide our guests with the very best resort experience.”

The 5 Bars team brings more than two decades of invaluable experience in deploying, maintaining and managing wireless networks.

“We believe with the right technology, leadership and dedication, high-density public venues such as casinos can experience faster and reliable wireless connectivity,” said John Clarey, CEO for 5 Bars. “With Morongo Casino Resort & Spa attracting tens of thousands of guests every day, the opportunity to demonstrate our superior capabilities and deliver this project couldn’t come at a better time.”

About 5 Bars:

5 Bars is a privately held company in Irvine Calif. that provides wireless master planning for communities, stadiums and large-scale venues through master planning network development, ownership and management. 5 Bars works with venue owners to design, build, operate, monetize and maintain state-of-the-art seamless wireless networks with world-class infrastructure while enhancing wireless connectivity. 5 Bars is a leading provider of commercial indoor and outdoor neutral host DAS, small cells and high density carrier-grade Wi-Fi networks. http://xgcommunities.com.

About the Morongo Casino Resort & Spa:

The 4-Diamond Morongo Casino, Resort & Spa is located along the 10 Freeway near Palm Springs, Calif. Owned and operated by the Morongo Band of Mission Indians, it offers the hottest slots and an array of table and high-limit gaming at one of the largest tribal gaming centers in the U.S. The towering 27-story resort features five top-rated restaurants, a stunning swimming pool with private cabanas, a world-class spa, popular nightclub, legendary live entertainment and, nearby, the 36-hole championship Morongo Golf Club at Tukwet Canyon. http://morongocasinoresort.com.


5 BARS™ Provides Advanced Wi-Fi for NRG Stadium

Harris County / Houston, Texas

Wireless Leader to Deliver Carrier-Grade Wi-Fi for NRG Stadium

Irvine, Calif, – 5 Bars™ announced today they are building a carrier-grade Wi-Fi system for NRG Stadium at NRG Park the premier sports, convention, tradeshow and entertainment complex located in Harris County, the cultural center and urban hub of Houston.  NRG Park hosts over 5.5 million guests annually and is comprised of four large facilities; NRG Stadium seating 72,500 fans, NRG Center offering 1.4 million square feet of exhibition space, NRG Arena with 8,000 seats and 26,000 parking spaces and the Astrodome.

 

 

 

5 Bars™ is a premier provider of Wireless Master Plans for Counties, Cities and Large Scale Venues, develops comprehensive wireless strategies through a unique holistic view of all assets, coverage and capacity.  5 Bars™ will work with the Harris County Sports & Convention Corporation to plan, design, build and operate carrier-grade Wi-Fi with Extreme Networks™ access points. Carrier-grade Wi-Fi supports better levels of security in order to auto-authenticate, provide higher levels of quality service and discoverability. 5 Bars™ will install 802.11ac Wave 2 access points (APs), optimized for high-density deployments to address the network demands driven by mobility, smart devices, and the exploding wireless enabled internet of things (IoT).

“We are excited to work with 5 Bars™ to deliver a state-of–the art network and enhance the experience for our patrons, fans and guests ”, said Mark Miller, General Manager for NRG Park.

Attendees of the stadium will experience a profound improvement in wireless connectivity and data speeds with the carrier-grade Wi-Fi system. 5 Bars™ will design and engineer the wireless network to exceed requirements and specification parameters, to ensure NRG Stadium of Wi-Fi coverage and superior Wi-Fi capacity for mobile devices.

“The 5 Bars™ team brings over two decades of invaluable experience in deploying, maintaining and managing wireless networks. We believe with the right technology, leadership and dedication, high-density public venues such as stadiums can experience better, faster, most responsive and reliable wireless connectivity” said John Clarey, CEO for 5 Bars™.

5 Bars™ offers fully managed wireless solutions, including monitoring services, RF assessments, alarming, connection surveys, analytics, remote troubleshooting, break-fix, spares, on-site repair and event support.

About 5 Bars™

5 Bars™ is an Irvine, California based, privately held premier Wireless Master Plan and infrastructure company.  5 Bars™ provides wireless master planning, network development, ownership, and end-to-end management working with venue owners, Cities and Communities.  5 Bars™ delivers commercial indoor and outdoor distributed antenna systems (DAS), carrier-grade Wi-Fi networks, and small cell systems on behalf of properties and service providers.


Making Connected Cities Possible:

5 Bars to Develop City of Sacramento Wireless Master Plan

SACRAMENTO, Calif. /California Newswire/ — 5 Bars, a leading innovator in distributed antenna systems (DAS) and Wi-Fi wireless services for intelligent infrastructure, announced today an agreement to develop the City of Sacramento’s Wireless Master Plan.

5 Bars has entered into an agreement to deliver a high speed wireless connectivity Master Plan for the City of Sacramento and when fully implemented, will provide the ability for all citizens to publicly access high speed wireless internet in key areas. This capability supports intelligent infrastructure technologies providing Sacramento new capabilities, strong benefits to its economy, and a modern framework to create a livable, sustainable, smart city.

“This initiative supports the City’s IT Digital Strategy and is in alignment with Mayor Johnson’s move toward City 3.0,” said Sacramento CIO, Maria MacGunigal.

“We are delighted to work with the city’s progressive leadership to contribute technologies and a smart infrastructure that will positively impact its citizens for many years to come,” said Karen Sessions, 5 Bars Chief External Affairs Officer. “Smart infrastructure is the backbone of a progressive city economy, and urban development projects such as this create a smart network, help integrate hardware, software and data that work holistically, to improve quality of life, sustainability and efficiencies in metropolitan areas.”

Sessions added, “The 5 Bars team will work with Sacramento to help implement its visionary ‘Cities 3.0’ master plan towards a renaissance of urban innovation.”

About 5 Bars (5BARS.com):

5 BARS(TM) is an Irvine, California based premier neutral host provider that delivers state-of-the-art DAS and Wi-Fi systems for communities, venues, stadiums and properties. Venues that carry the 5 BARS(TM) certification possess the highest standards of wireless connectivity.

About 5 Bars Media:

5 Bars Media provides in-venue applications delivered over the Wi-Fi network. Our app enterprise helps venues communicate and engage with guests through their mobile devices.

About 5 Bars Communities:

5 Bars Communities(TM) provides Municipal Wireless Master Planning and management of network infrastructure including cell tower, outdoor small cells and distributed antenna systems. The 5 Bars team has experience designing and developing over 500 wireless projects nationwide.

More information: www.xgcommunities.com/.

MEDIA CONTACT: Raylene Gonzalez, 5 Bars,(949) 933-8137.