Expansion

Future Ready

SkyLine’s journey as a telecommunications company has always followed a progressive path, one that started as an ‘elusive dream’ to bring telephone service to isolated mountain communities of northwest North Carolina. As the largest among eight telecommunications cooperatives in the state and the eighth largest in the nation, SkyLine’s board of directors and senior leadership have continually kept a forward focus on bringing its members the latest technology and providing them comparable and affordable services to urban areas.

SkyLine’s journey as a telecommunications company has always followed a progressive path, one that started as an ‘elusive dream’ to bring telephone service to isolated mountain communities of northwest North Carolina. As the largest among eight telecommunications cooperatives in the state and the eighth largest in the nation, SkyLine’s board of directors and senior leadership have continually kept a forward focus on bringing its members the latest technology and providing them comparable and affordable services to urban areas.

Our employees often hear from customers coming here from other locales who say that SkyLine/SkyBest far surpasses their previous service providers by offering the latest in technology and a better customer service experience.

The completion of the cooperative’s ambitious fiber-to-the-home deployment and other recent innovative initiatives have placed SkyLine at a pivotal juncture in its 66-year history. “Our board and staff have engaged in strategic planning for many years, and we are well-positioned on many fronts to take advantage of expansion opportunities in this fast-paced digital world,” said SkyLine CEO Jimmy Blevins.

As the co-op’s wholly-owned subsidiary, SkyBest Communications is starting to fill in the fiber-service gaps to more and more communities outside SkyLine’s cooperative footprint in Ashe County and beyond. This fall, we are introducing our triple play of services to a new residential community in Lenoir, and in early 2018, we plan to extend fiber services to the St. Mary’s/Rayfield community of West Jefferson in Ashe County.

Another significant expansion with construction now underway is in Mountain City, Tennessee, just west of our Ashe County service area and this side of the only community we serve in that county: Shady Valley. County officials there welcomed this latest news and have been working closely with our Construction and Competitive Operations groups on the first phase of the project.

Representatives from SkyLine and Johnson County Government have worked collaboratively to improve access to fiber-based services for businesses and residents in the Mountain City area. Left to right: SkyLine Strategic Sales Supervisor Brent Keith, SkyLine Executive Director of Competitive Operations Edward Hinson, Johnson County Mayor Larry Potter, Johnson County Chamber President Gina Meade and Johnson County Government Purchasing Agent, Dustin Shearin.

Engineering and construction activity is underway to bring Wilson Drive in Boone fiber-based services to the downtown business community of Mountain City, Tennessee.

“To me, it’s a win-win for Johnson County,” said County Mayor Larry Potter. “We are eager to bring SkyBest’s fiber services to the Town of Mountain City and hope SkyBest can branch out to even more businesses.”

Now completing his sixth year as County Mayor and facing re-election next year, Mayor Potter has hoped for this opportunity to come to Johnson County for some time. “In my heart, my dream for this county is to dream big, especially with a project like this,” he said. “I would like to brag that we are a Gig community, giving us the capability to attract new businesses to our region, including a call center operation.”

SkyBest also plans to offer residential services to homes inside Mountain City’s fiber footprint, with service connections to businesses beginning in December 2017, followed by residential connections.

“We are so grateful for the deliberate and positive response we’ve received from the Mayor and the County Commission regarding our plans to expand services to this area, and appreciate their help in securing a remote site for our fiber facilities,” said Executive Director of Competitive Operations Edward Hinson.

The county also recently received notification from the U.S. Department of Agriculture that it received a rural development grant to upgrade to a new VoIP phone system for all county offices, which SkyBest will provide, according to County Purchasing Agent Dustin Shearin. “Throughout the process of working to obtain better phone, internet equipment and service for Johnson County Government, I have met one-to-one with several folks from SkyLine, and I quickly realized that they have become more than a business partner—they are locally invested. They are about making things better for the communities they are a part of.”

Mayor Potter added: “We all have to work together to make life and opportunities better for Johnson County, and we all recognize the longterm economic impact this investment means for our entire community.”

Beyond Mountain City, SkyLine is pursuing additional USDA grants to help fund other fiber service expansions to additional unserved communities of Watauga and Avery counties.

SkyLine has moved its customer service operations from Seven Devils to a new retail location on Wilson Drive in Boone and introduced fiber-based telecommunications services to businesses along Highway 105 and Business 321, including Boone’s medical services community.

Retail Sales Representatives in our new Boone location include (left to right): Lauren Hicks, Brandy Miller and Kristen Costner.

Mailing Address
P.O. Box 759
1200 NC Hwy 194 N.
West Jefferson, NC 28694

Phone Numbers
Toll free: 1-800-759-2226
Phone: (336) 877-3111
Fax: (336) 877-2020

Web Address
skybest.com

Office Locations
Banner Elk
Boone
Sparta
West Jefferson
(Smart Home & Call Center)