Competitive Local Exchange Carrier

Yipes Communications, San Francisco

The lone repeat winner for 2001 is Yipes Communications, provider of Gigabit Ethernet services over optical networks in major metro areas. While other companies are also providing Gig-E as a service over optical pipes, CEO Jerry Parricks Yipes was chosen by the judges for going beyond that service to develop a network architecture that can give businesses bandwidth on demand and be the basic platform for future enhanced services.

Yipes fully meshed network allows any-to-any connections among its subscribers, enabling them to create communities of interest. It also means service providers, such as those offering storage services, can connect to the Yipes network and have immediate access to a wide range of customers.

"I chose Yipes for its rigorous focus on simply giving businesses what they really want, creating relationships with end users, and for their marketing rather than technology focus in a segment where that is rare," Mine says. "CLECs [pronounced SEE-leks] that are not willing to get dirty with real end users have failed."

Coffield gave Yipes points for expanding beyond its initial market entry and remaining aggressive. "I like that theyve added new LuxN [optical networking] gear to their network to make the most of the network assets theyve got, and that they rolled up valuable access to a huge commercial real estate portfolio, buying rights from bankrupt BroadBand Office," Coffield says. "The business case is very sound. Theyve got an amazing mapping database that allows them to look at the number of high-speed clients in a building and decide whether its worth doing a curb cut so that expansion costs are covered by revenues."

Yipes claimed a very close victory over another innovative competitive carrier: Focal Communications. Focal was cited for its expansion into DSL technology and the subsequent deployment of voice-over-DSL in the major metropolitan areas, where it has added data service.

Others receiving votes: Focal Communications, XO Communications

Previous winners: Yipes Communications (2000), RCN Telecom Services (1999)