For the Press

Oconee EMC partners with internet service provider Conexon Connect to bring world-class broadband to rural central Georgia

The Connect, powered by Oconee EMC, fiber network will deliver high-speed internet access to more than 3,000 members across Wilkinson County

DUDLEY, Ga., Nov. 20, 2023 – Conexon Connect, the internet service provider formed by rural fiber-optic network leader, Conexon, has been selected by Oconee EMC to deliver high-speed fiber internet access for rural Wilkinson County, Georgia residents.

The Connect, powered by Oconee EMC, network will deliver a nearly 588-mile fiber-to-the-home network bringing world-class internet service to over 3,000 Oconee EMC members across Wilkinson County. The goal is to ultimately expand fiber broadband access to all Oconee EMC members, if possible. The Connect, powered by Oconee EMC, network build for Wilkinson County is currently anticipated to be completed in one-to-two years.

The relationship with Oconee EMC expands Conexon Connect’s footprint in Georgia, marking the Internet Service Provider’s (ISP) eleventh EMC partnership. Across all Georgia projects, Connect will ultimately reach more than 228,000 rural Georgians with access to multi-gigabit-speed internet service. The ISP recently celebrated the early completion of one of its initial Georgia projects, the Connect, powered by Southern Rivers Energy, network, having successfully condensed a three-year project into two years.

“With each new Georgia project, we are bringing life- and community-changing fiber broadband service to rural homes and businesses,” said Randy Klindt, Conexon Founding Partner and Conexon Connect CEO. “Electric cooperatives continue to pave the way in taking this critical service deeper into those areas where others have refused to serve. We are pleased and excited to partner with Terri Howard and the team at Oconee for this latest Connect build.”

The ultra-fast fiber-optic network will offer Oconee EMC members access to symmetrical (same upload and download speeds) multi-gigabit internet capabilities – among the fastest and most robust in the nation. Additionally, it will provide reliable, clear phone service and enable the benefits of smart grid capabilities to the electrical infrastructure, including improved power outage response times, better load balancing, more efficient electricity delivery and more. 

“Oconee EMC is working to close the digital divide, one county at a time with its partnership with Conexon Connect. While we are kicking off our fiber journey in Wilkinson County, it is our hope that with the success of each project, additional projects will be on the horizon. Oconee EMC’s goal is to provide all of its members and their families with the same level of fiber broadband services,” said Terri Howard, president and CEO, Oconee EMC.

About Conexon

Conexon works with Rural Electric Cooperatives to bring fiber to the home in rural communities. The company is comprised of professionals who have worked in electric cooperatives and the telecommunications industry, and offer decades of individual experience in business planning, building networks, marketing and selling telecommunications. Conexon offers its electric cooperative clients end-to-end broadband deployment and operations support, from a project’s conception all the way through to its long-term sustainability. It works with clients to analyze economic feasibility, secure financing, design the network, manage construction, provide operational support, optimize business performance, and determine optimal partnerships. To date, Conexon has assisted more than 275 electric cooperatives, 75 of which are deploying fiber networks.  With its clients, the company has designed more than 200,000 miles of fiber, connected more than 500,000 rural American homes to fiber and builds more than 50,000 miles of fiber annually. The company has secured more than $2 billion in federal, state, and local grants and subsidies for its clients.

About Conexon Connect

Conexon Connect is the internet service provider (ISP) arm of rural fiber broadband design and construction management leader Conexon. The subsidiary was formed to operate and manage cooperative and investor fiber-to-the-home networks. Connect leverages Conexon’s decades of co-op operations, fiber-optic design and construction, telecommunications, federal and state lobbying and customer experience management expertise to successfully launch and operate projects.

About Oconee EMC

Oconee EMC has been proudly serving central Georgia since 1938 and serves over 9,250 members across Baldwin, Bibb, Bleckley, Dodge, Laurens, Twiggs and Wilkinson counties with 2,100 miles of energized line.