Wednesday, November 28, 2012

FirstNet and an Oversimplification of What Has to Happen

What will be crucial for the insured success of the Nations Public Safety Broadband Network and FirstNet will be its modeling templates for all the States and the territories to execute on. Most importantly will be FirstNet’s ability to convey a strong a business model that is self-sustaining and even capable to create jobs, revenue and advance the technical integration of all the Public Safety Service organizations…thus the reason for the “Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012” and I underscore “Job Creation Act”.

Hopefully it is starting to settle in that the execution of this entire deployment will depend on the States ability to execute a solid Public Private Partnership solicited with a standard RFP process to the private equity market, especially if we actually want to pay for the entire network. There are 4 major points I see that need to be addressed, and provided, by FirstNet to the States:

      1.     Public Private Partnership Business (P3) Model for the States can follow
      2.     A fixed template of guidelines for the States to generate solid RFPs (Request for Proposals)
      3.     Technical Solution standards to follow
      4.     Technical integration standards incorporating a centralized model of “core” implementation and     operation

Point 1 – All the States will need to execute under the same P3 model to make this successful. FirstNet should champion one “fixed model” to be implemented across the board. If we don’t then can you imagine the plethora of original ideas coming up across the United States trying to build a combined integrated solution? Sounds like a lot of wasted money and time to me.

That model (refer to my past writings to see the full model) should use the State’s owns internal agencies and entities as clients to ride the network (not a subscription model); incorporation of all those entity assets and infrastructure; fixed recurring payments based on comparable solutions had the entities been forced to build a similar solution; acquired technical requirements from entities; incorporated technical and recurring revenue solicited in a State sponsored RFP; and ultimately responding private equity and investment. The P3 model must create the ability to attract private equity to invest and buy the States demand for broadband access using the State’s Public Safety Broadband Network.

In the end we are building an exact duplicate of a commercial network, so as a private network, there is no reason this network should not be able to make just as much money, if not more, as the carriers typical do.

Point 2 - FirstNet can generate a fixed template of guidelines that lays out this model and the relationships required. FirstNet can then dictate the procurement ethics and the requirements needed by the State’s individual entities in return private equity will be able to see recurring fixed revenue from the State entity contracts. By collecting the required technical hardening requirements, and the inclusion of existing infrastructure assets from the State entities, the State can illustrate the needed technical design and the map the recurring revenue possibilities to attract private equity. This information can be incorporated into a standard template of an RFP, supported by FirstNet yet executed by the State, which can be solicited to the Private Equity market. In return private equity will bid (buy) for 49% ownership of the recurring revenue stream as an incentive to pay for the entire statewide build out and long-term management. The remaining 51% would remain with the State for re-investment into the State’s PSBN solution (could pay for the First Responder handsets and communication gear).

Point 3 – FirstNet has already collected enough technical design standards to date. What FirstNet needs to do now is incorporate those technical standards into the RFP mandates that the States can follow.

Point 4 – The centralized “core” model, as with the technical design specifications, just needs to be conveyed into the States RFP demands as well.

I know this is an oversimplification of a much bigger solution, but I believe that making it easy insures better success in its implementation. After all why do we need to complicate things…its just another 4G network being built?

PS.. We also need FirstNet to release the $135 Million grants to the State to start the planning and audits. In return the State's need to allow their internal State entities to start their own planning and audits of their own facilities and assets then be reimbursed by the grant funding that will be allocated. Those planning and audits need to include the cost justification and business case of how that entity will be included in the State P3, its client SLA contract framework and its potential recurring annual payment terms for the the PSBN broadband service over its footprint. All of which can be reimbursed by the State.

Just some guy and a blog….

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