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Rushville broadband firm plans 100 jobs

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Rushville-based Omnicity Corp. said this morning that it plans to create 100 jobs there within the next three years by investing $2.5 million in wireless infrastructure and a new corporate headquarters.

Founded in 2003, Omnicity provides wireless broadband service to 6,000 rural subscribers in 30 counties across the state.

The new headquarters, to be built in the North Rushville Industrial Park, will house the company's call center, collections and distribution operations.

Rushville is in Rush County, about 30 miles east of Indianapolis.

Omnicity plans to begin hiring customer-service representatives, field-service personnel and managers in October to meet growing demand from recent acquisitions and new fiber-optic construction contracts, the company said.

Right now, Omnicity has 38 employees in four Indiana locations, including Carmel.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. offered Omnicity up to $25,000 in training grants and will provide Rushville officials with a $110,000 grant to assist in off-site infrastructure improvements needed for the project. The city of Rushville will provide additional property-tax abatement.

"We believe we are at the perfect place with the perfect plan at the perfect time in our efforts to reach all of the rural areas with broadband services that are much needed for economic development, education, health care and smart-grid technology," Omnicity CEO Greg Jarman said in a prepared statement.

Jarman, Omnicity's former chief operating officer, became CEO in June. He replaced Dick Beltzhoover, a private investor in the company, who took the company's reins last year following a change of management.

Beltzhoover and Jarman dumped previous management, then stepped in and began cutting costs.

Beltzhoover took Omnicity public in February but didn't follow the traditional path of raising funds to support a public offering. Essentially, Omnicity was rolled into the shell of a publicly traded Nevada company, Bear River Resources, that had acquired mining rights but was no longer active.

In the coming year, Omnicity said it wants to expand into 100 additional "small and rural" markets. Management hopes to grow revenue to at least $5 million and make the company profitable by year-end. Omnicity's business plan calls for $76 million in annual revenue and 166,000 subscribers by the end of 2013.

Company shares were fetching 56 cents each this morning, down 2 cents.
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