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Hancock County utilities take on new name

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Hancock Telecom and Central Indiana Power have completed their merger and have come up with a new name that’s, well, not exactly down to earth: NineStar Connect.

But the companies have an explanation.

The “Nine” represents the consolidation of nine separate companies since 1950. “Star” denotes light, which is a nod toward Hancock Telecom’s fiber-optic network and Central Indiana Power’s electricity that powers the light. And “Connect” brings together “all aspects of the power of connectivity from a single service provider of electricity and communications.”

The merged companies said much thought went into this name, including input from 800 customers.

“A lot of time, research and discussion went into the selection of the new name. We wanted an innovative name yet we wanted to keep some of the heritage of the two great cooperatives,” said President and CEO Tim Hills.

Hancock Telecom has about 9,000 customers. Central Indiana Power has 12,000 customers in Hancock County and in parts of Hamilton, Madison and Rush counties.

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