MI-Connection hires CEO, gets local control
by Staff Writer
Auger was brought in as a consultant in March to help the town-owned broadband company achieve local control from system operator Bristol Virginia Utilities. MI-Connection recently finalized an agreement in which Bristol Virginia Utilities would become a service vendor, providing customer service, billing and technical support.
The agreement reduces MI-Connection’s annual management fee to Bristol Virginia Utilities from $1.5 million to about $300,000 by 2013, while allowing the company to hire locally and bring more services in-house.
“(The transition) strengthens our market competitiveness by providing local sales and marketing leadership to respond to the needs of our customers while reducing our operating cost structure,” Chairman John Venzon said.
Mooresville Town Manager Erskine Smith described Auger as the right choice for CEO.
“David has added depth and skill to our team, as well as a proven track record,” Smith said. “In the first quarter of this fiscal year, with his help, we’ve increased subscribers at a higher rate than we did for the entire year last year.”
Auger proved himself to be the right leader by ensuring a smooth transition toward local control, said Dawn Huston, who chaired the board’s hiring committee.
“I am excited about his ability to drive subscription growth while managing costs,” Huston said. “David has the full trust of the towns and this board.”
Auger said he’s looking forward to the new step.
“I will now focus on moving this business forward by leveraging our inherent assets to include our employees, a new state-of-the-art network, quality of service and localism while continuing to build on the momentum achieved year-to-date,” Auger said.
MI-Connection has already started hiring new employees.
Sarah Muller, who has worked with the town’s finance department for the past three years, will serve as controller, while Alan Hall will move from general manager to operations director.
“Alan has done a great job as BVU’s onsite general manager,” Auger said. “Because of his technical and operational strength, we are eager to have him continue with us.”