01 December 2017
| Alan Burkitt-Gray
Australian bank Macquarie has stepped in to work with Rivada Networks on bids to build emergency services networks in US states.
The pair say they have already won a conditional award from
Colorado to build a 4G broadband radio access network for
"We are excited about the opportunity to leverage Macquarie
Capital’s extensive global expertise as the
premier developer of infrastructure assets, for the benefit of
opt-out states," said Declan Ganley, chairman and CEO of Rivada
In March the US’s First Responder Network
Authority (FirstNet) awarded AT&T a $46.5 billion, 25-year
contract to build a national emergency services network, that
will use 4G technology to enable police, fire services and
other first responders to communicate.
But each state can go to a separate provider to build its own
service, that would be linked into the national network.
"For states that opt out, our two companies will work together
to develop and finance the build-out of their FirstNet opt-out
radio access networks," said Nick Butcher, global co-head of
infrastructure and energy of Macquarie Capital.
"We are pleased to have received the conditional award from the
Colorado governor’s Office of Information
Technology and look forward to working with the state to
develop this exciting project."
Rivada said that it and Macquarie Capital, along with their
consortium partners, plan to deliver a network "which provides
states substantial benefits – including a significant
discount to the cost of service for public safety, job creation
in the state, broad coverage expansion especially in rural
areas, and real local control of the network".
They added: "The purpose-built public safety network will
provide greater functionality and lower the cost of
telecommunications for public safety."
The decision from Colorado depends first on a recommendation
from the FirstNet Colorado Governing Body, but ultimately it is
up to state governor, John Hickenlooper, to decide whether to
go with AT&T or pick Rivada and Macquarie’s
The governor is expected to decide by 28 December, said