MARYLAND COMMERCE SUPPORTS BLOOSURF LLC IN EXPANDING HIGH-SPEED INTERNET TO EASTERN SHORE RESIDENTS
Delmarva high-speed internet provider receives $4.2 million from FCC
BALTIMORE, MD (August 22, 2019) –The Maryland Department of Commerce has announced support for Bloosurf LLC, a high-speed wireless network provider on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, as it expands its service throughout the region. Bloosurf was recently awarded more than $4.2 million by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to expand high-speed internet throughout Caroline, Dorchester, Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester counties. With this funding, Bloosurf will add six new locations, serving hundreds of residents, businesses, and schools throughout the shore.
To assist the company with its expansion, the state has provided a loan guaranty through the Maryland Small Business Development Financing Authority (MSBDFA). The guaranty will support a line of credit provided by the Eastern Shore’s 1880 Bank under Bloosurf’s agreement with the FCC.
“Thanks to MSBDFA, Bloosurf will be able to significantly expand rural high-speed internet service on the Eastern Shore serving over 100,000 households and businesses,” said Paul Carliner, president of Bloosurf. “As a Maryland company, we’re proud to partner with the state to address one of the most important needs in rural Maryland, expanding access to affordable, high-quality internet service for homes and businesses.”
Founded in 2009, Bloosurf is headquartered in Salisbury and serves Maryland’s lower Eastern Shore, as well as select counties in Delaware and Virginia. According to the company, the FCC financing – which is spread out over 10 years – is the “single largest federal investment for last mile service” in the history of Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Funding for the first year will be used for engineering, designing, construction, purchasing new equipment, and testing the service; the following years will focus on delivering service to communities throughout the region.
“Our administration has made significant progress in connecting Maryland’s rural communities with high-speed internet, including our recent announcement allocating an additional $10 million as part of a five-year plan to provide 225,000 Marylanders with affordable internet access,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “We are proud to support Bloosurf’s expansion as it continues to service our Eastern Shore communities.”
“Improving broadband and wireless access for Marylanders throughout the state has been a top priority for Governor Hogan,” said Maryland Commerce Secretary Kelly M. Schulz. “Companies like Bloosurf can help us expand on this initiative and we are happy to support their efforts in serving rural residents and businesses across the Eastern Shore.”
Created in 1978, MSBDFA provides financing assistance to small and minority-owned businesses throughout Maryland through direct loans, working capital, loan guarantees, and assistance in obtaining surety bonding and lines of credit. MSBDFA is managed by a private contractor – Meridian Management Group (MMG), a professional asset manager for economic development and private equity funds.
“The MSBDFA loan guaranty program was designed to assist companies like Bloosurf obtain needed bank financing,” said Stanley Tucker, president and CEO of Meridian Management Group. “To continue Bloosurf’s growth pattern and to leverage federal funding to develop its infrastructure on the Eastern Shore, Bloosurf required MSBDFA’s assistance. By providing a loan guaranty to the 1880 Bank, MSBDFA is assisting Bloosurf to bridge the digital divide by providing internet service to the unserved and underserved communities of the lower Eastern Shore.”
To learn more about the program, please visit commerce.maryland.gov/
About Maryland Commerce
The Maryland Department of Commerce stimulates private investment and creates jobs by attracting new businesses, encouraging the expansion and retention of existing companies, and providing financial assistance to Maryland companies. The Department promotes the State’s many economic advantages and markets local products and services at home and abroad to spur economic development and international investment, trade and tourism. Because they are major economic generators, the Department also supports the Arts, film production, sports and other special events. For more information, visit commerce.maryland.gov.