Bell to Acquire Distributel, Gobbling Up Another Independent ISP

bell distributel

On Friday afternoon heading into the Labor Day long weekend, Bell announced it would acquire Distributel, one of Canada’s largest independent network providers.

“Investing in a successful company such as Distributel and its family of brands aligns with Bell’s efforts to provide customers with a choice in service options,” said Bell in a press release.

Bell says Distributel “will benefit from expanded resources and access to technology required to support the next stage in its business growth and to continue to enhance the services it already successfully delivers to customers.”

“Distributel is a highly successful company with experienced industry talent and we’re excited for them to join the Bell group of companies. As part of Bell, Distributel will enhance its innovative services for residential and small and medium business customers, backed by Bell’s resources and technology,” said Blaik Kirby, Group President, Consumer and Small & Medium Business (SMB), Bell.

“With this announcement, Distributel is better positioned to compete and deliver on our decades-long commitment to bringing choice and affordability to Canadians from coast to coast to coast. We hope Canadians are as excited as we are about the many benefits that will result from this partnership. Our teams remain focused on serving our customers with excellence across all our brands as we leverage Bell’s resources to expand and enhance our product offerings,” said Matt Stein, CEO, Distributel.

Distributel will continue to operate independently, says Bell, and existing operations will continue under the former’s CEO, Matt Stein. No terms of the deal were provided.

Stein’s LinkedIn says he is still the Chair of the Board of the Competitive Network Operators of Canada, an organization that advocates for independent internet service providers.

Just two months ago, Stein was seeking to “hire an Executive Assistant to support me and other members of our Executive team at Distributel,” according to his LinkedIn. It’s unclear when the deal for Bell to acquire Distributel was underway.

Independent internet service providers such as Distributel have argued against CRTC wholesale internet rate decisions in the past, that favoured incumbents such as Bell. TekSavvy remains one of the largest independent internet service providers still standing.

Back in February, Bell announced it would acquire EBOX, Quebec’s largest independent internet service provider.