With NTG gone, competitors see opportunity John M. Collard, Chairman, Strategic Management Partners, Inc. was interim CEO for Network Technologies Group, Inc.
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John M. Collard, Chairman, Strategic Management Partners, Inc. was interim CEO for Network Technologies Group, Inc.
With NTG gone, competitors see opportunity        Text
by Roger Hughlett

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August 16, 2002     Printed Edition 

With NTG gone, competitors see opportunity

Roger Hughlett   Staff

A competitor is pouncing on projects left unfinished by the abrupt shutdown of Network Technologies Group Inc.

Officials from the Foy Group Inc., a Baltimore-based provider of fiber and cable installation services, are going after clients who were left in the cold when NTG closed its doors last month.

Carlton Battle, director of business development for the Foy Group, has met with three customers he knew hired NTG to do fiber installation work. Battle said the Foy Group wants to win the unfinished contracts from Johns Hopkins Medical Center, Comcast Communications and Baltimore City.

"We're going after these because we know they need the work done," Battle said.

The closing of NTG on July 12, which the company's interim CEO John M. Collard blamed on accounting irregularities, was another indication that the fiber and cable installation industry is struggling as much as any other technology related sector. The few firms still in business are not going out quietly. The half dozen NTG competitors are fighting over fewer customers and jobs.

Because of less demand for work, competitors like the Foy Group are doing whatever they can to find work left unfinished by NTG.

"There's quite a lot of due diligence that goes into finding out who [NTG] left holding the bag," he said.

Other regional firms are aware of the situation and are planning to scout out potential customers in Greater Baltimore.

Lawrence, Pa.-based Black Box Corp. and Milford, Pa.-based Fiber Plus International compete with the Foy Group and previously with NTG.

Officials with both firms said they were not going after specific companies based on NTG's demise. However, new construction in Greater Baltimore has made it an attractive market for these firms.

"It's a tight market now, but there is still a demand for these types of services," said Eric Brainard, a telecommunications equipment analyst with Boston-based Global Investment Group.

Battle said in the fiber and cable installation business, going after work left undone by troubled firms is nothing new. In fact, the Foy Group landed a contract to wire Southern High School in Baltimore City after Columbia-based Nexus Cabling Inc. shut down last year.

There are less than six firms in the region who provide fiber and cable installation, Battle and others confirmed.

For a market that is still expected to be worth several millions of dollars this year, finding any and every unfinished job is a top priority for the firms left standing.

Roger Hughlett can be reached at rhughlett@bizjournals.com.


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