ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Officials from Greenlight Networks announced Monday that Oak Hill Capital, a New York City-based private equity firm, will acquire a controlling interest in the locally-based internet service provider.
Company officials said this acquisition will accelerate expansion of Greenlight’s fiber broadband network and create hundreds of new jobs in the years to come.
Greenlight was founded in 2011 by CEO Mark Murphy and bought by former Buffalo Sabres owner and Paychex founder Tom Golisano in May 2018. In a press release, Murphy credited Golisano and Tom Bonadio of Impact Capital to help expand the company into new regions and grow from 18 to 160 employees.
“New York continues to be fortunate to have these gentlemen investing here, and I’ve been fortunate to learn a great deal about how to accelerate our business from them,” Murphy said.
With Oak Hill Capital’s acuisition, company officials say they expect to see even more job growth in the future.
According to a joint statement from Greenlight and Oak Hill, the private equity firm plans to invest up to $300 million in the internet company, and expands to add 70 additional jobs by the end of the year.
Greenlight’s network currently reaches approximately 80,000 homes and the company said it believes under new management it will be able to reach more than 800,000 in the years ahead.
“Oak Hill is an ideal partner to support our growth strategy, and its commitment of capital, resources and expertise is critical as we prepare to grow,” said Greenlight Founder and Chief Executive Officer Mark Murphy. “Like Greenlight, Oak Hill understands that fiber Inter”net is the future and rapid expansion is necessary to meet the growing demand.”
Murphy and the existing Greenlight management team will continue to lead the company “in conjunction with the Oak Hill team,” the companies’ joint statement said.
“We enthusiastically support Greenlight’s mission to expand Internet access and drive economic growth in underserved cities and towns across New York state and the northeast, and we share the company’s continued commitment to delivering the highest quality service experience possible for all customers,” said Scott Baker, Oak Hill partner. “We are excited to partner with our long-time friend Mark Murphy and the rest of the talented Greenlight management team to further accelerate the company’s growth.”
Company officials say the acquisition is expected to be finalized this spring, pending approval from the New York State Public Service Commission.
Greenlight currently offers its high-speed internet in 20 munincipalities in Rochester, Buffalo, and Binghamton.
In 2020 Greenlight was recognized by BroadbandNow’s 2020 Internet Service Provider Awards as the nation’s number one fastest internet provider as well as in New York and the number one fastest fiber provider nationwide.
Also in 2020, Greenlight and the City of Rochester signed a Master License Agreement that accelerates Greenlight expansion to residents in the Flower City.
The agreement outlines the fee structure and application process for Greenlight to obtain rights-of-way permits for its underground and aerial facilities within the city. With this agreement in place, Greenlight can now move forward with construction plans in more city neighborhoods.