Nokia, Ericsson, Intel among Rivada Networks partners on FirstNet bid

Ericsson, Nokia, Intel Security and Harris Corporation are just some of the big-name vendors that Rivada Mercury has secured in its bid to build the first nationwide LTE broadband U.S. network for public safety.

Other vendors include Fujitsu Network Communications and Black & Veatch. Together, the organizations are proposing to build a dedicated mission-critical LTE network in the 700 MHz band for FirstNet.

Rivada Mercury has several founding members, of which Rivada Networks is one. Declan Ganley, co-CEO of Rivada Networks, told FierceWirelessTech that it has partners that are not co-founders, including carrier partners that include smaller rural carriers, but it's not naming its main carrier partner yet.

In terms of the geographic and population coverage, the Band 14 network will have the largest footprint and be larger than any existing carrier's footprint, he said, because of the unique nature of this public safety mission and requirements.

They've also put together what they consider an attractive way to bring public safety users onto the network quickly and get states on board. "We meet or exceed FirstNet's requirements in every category of the RFP," he said. "We believe rural users are going to be very pleased with what they see."

Ganley says they also have more than adequate resources and backing to fund the operation and provide a strong return in terms of monetization. "It's a game changer," he said. "What we've submitted provides a really great value for public safety and FirstNet."

Rivada Mercury CEO Joe Euteneuer said in a release that the Rivada Mercury team is comprised of proven technology companies -- "each leaders in their field with unmatched technology capabilities and experience serving the public safety community with innovative and forward-leaning solutions. Our team's approach to FirstNet offers many benefits for America's public safety community, namely we will provide public safety with a purpose-built Band 14 network and immediate turn-key access to the largest non-Band 14 coverage footprint in the U.S."

Rivada says its solution will give priority to public safety when and where they need it. A key differentiator for Rivada Mercury is the use of Rivada's pioneering Dynamic Spectrum Arbitrage (DSA) technology that enables the dynamic selling of excess critical-grade network capacity to commercial tenants without risk of interfering with first responders' broadband access. The use of DSA gives public safety the ability to share and allocate bandwidth among enterprise tenants.

Commercially, what's driving Rivada is the underlying value of the bandwidth that will be available for commercialization when public safety is not using it, and it's a very big chunk of spectrum with attractive physics, Ganley said. By building out this nationwide footprint and delivering the capacity required, it will far exceed what public safety needs on a routine basis. The spare capacity nationwide is very valuable, and it will monetize that through the open access marketplace.

For more:
- see this press release

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