North Carolina Construction News staff writer
In the same week that President Joe Biden announced the largest-ever investment to close the digital divide and committed to connect every American to high-speed internet by 2030, CommScope presented a $60.3 million plan to expand its fiber-optic cable manufacturing operations in Catawba County.
“Connecting every household in North Carolina to high-speed internet is going to take a lot of fiber, and with this expansion CommScope is answering the call not only with American jobs, but North Carolina jobs,” Gov. Roy Cooper said in a statement. “We appreciate CommScope’s additional investment in Catawba County and their confidence in our workforce to improve the nation’s fiber-optic infrastructure.”
Founded in Hickory, North Carolina, CommScope began with coaxial cable production for broadband and cable TV and now offers end-to-end solutions for wired and wireless networks. This project will upgrade the Catawba County facilities to increase the company’s capacity to produce fiber optic cable.
“CommScope is in the business of providing connectivity solutions, and we are proud to produce the fiber cables that help ensure all Americans have access to Broadband, right here in the State of North Carolina,” said Chuck Treadway, president & CEO of CommScope. “We appreciate our long-standing relationship with the State and Catawba County. This investment and jobs creation over the next four years will continue to keep the focus on North Carolina as the fiber cable hub of the U.S.”
CommScope’s expansion will receive a job development investment grant (JDIG). Using a formula that takes into account the new tax revenues generated by the new jobs, the JDIG agreement authorizes the potential reimbursement to the company of up to $1.9 million spread over 12 years.
“Catawba County has a strong telecommunications cluster,” said N.C. Representative Mitchell S. Setzer. “CommScope is the largest employer in the county and a great corporate citizen. We appreciate their contributions and the diligent work of the economic developers and local and state officials that supported this project.”