MetroFi officially pulls out of WiFi biz in Portland and other cities

As expected, MetroFi is pulling the plug on its metro WiFi initiative in Portland, and unlike Philadelphia, there doesn't appear to be a white knight to swoop in and save the project. Last month, MetroFi indicated it was mulling a sale and ending its muni-WiFi initiatives in the nine cities where it operates WiFi networks. It is now making good on those statements by shutting down all nine initiatives.

Portland appears to be taking it in stride, which means it likely won't go to the lengths that Philadelphia did to secure a new owner. Philadelphia last week reached an agreement with a local investor group called Network Acquisition Company LLC (NAC) to take over the operations of Philadelphia's Wireless Initiative after a city councilman aggressively searched for a new buyer. MetroFi had offered to sell the network to the city of Portland for just under $900,000, but the city declined, stating it was not interested in paying that much to run the network.

Logan Kleier, project manager for the city's Bureau of Technology Services told InformationWeek that he was happy to see the network accomplish what it did.

MetroFi is also shutting down WiFi initiatives in the northern California cities of Concord, Cupertino, Foster City, San Jose, Santa Clara and Sunnyvale along with Riverside in southern California and Aurora and Naperville in Illinois.

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Related stories:
MetroFi considers sale and end to muni-WiFi projects. MetroFi sale story
MetroFi wants $9M from Portland to finish WiFi. MetroFi story 
Investor group takes over Philly WiFi network. Philadelphia WiFi story