Do Rural Broadband Partnerships Work?


Finley Engineering video: An inside perspective on successful broadband ventures.

Closing the digital divide and bringing broadband to rural America is a challenging task that has been emphasized by the COVID-19 pandemic. There are many geographic areas that still contain unserved and underserved broadband. In order to solve this problem, we sometimes need to turn to partnerships for the best and most cost-effective solutions.

Companies are looking for ways to fast-track rural broadband while mitigating risk. Both have common goals and complementary skills including knowing how to build and operate physical networks in rural America and having the existing personnel to build and maintain the infrastructure.

Finley is uniquely positioned because we have clients on both sides i.e., broadband and electric utilities. We have vast experience facilitating these types of partnerships, often developing feasibility studies and grant applications on the clients’ behalf, recommending partnerships to help the business case for funding. Existing partnerships can utilize engineering and consulting firms like Finley to help facilitate discussions and the technical operations of the partnership. Ultimately, when the partnership is better for all involved, the telco, the utility and the community, it is a win-win situation.

Finley Engineering

Two Finley employees working in the field.

For more information on rural broadband partnerships, contact Sean Middleton with Finley Engineering at or call 800.225.9716. Visit our website:

For case studies, whitepapers and more, visit our resource library:



About Author

Sean Middleton joined Finley in 2019 as Director, Strategy Operations. As an accomplished Professional Engineer, he brings more than 23 years of experience to Finley. Sean will use his areas of expertise in electrical engineering, distribution system operations management, and design and maintenance of electrical systems, and consult with Finley energy clients on many of today’s regulatory and compliance issues. Sean can be reached at or by calling 217.473.6340 / 217.993.7646.

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