Value Concepts Inc. (VCI) is a turnkey telecommunications site development company specializing in site acquisition, zoning and permitting, project management, coordinating third party services, construction management, and co-location services. VCI’s primary goal is to manage clients’ bottom line cost for the development of each site.
H. Buddy Robinson, Jr., SR/WA, President of VCI, has 50-years of industry experience. He began his career in 1968 as a right-of-way agent in pipeline right-of-way acquisition and moved on to acquiring sites for sub-stations and power plant transmission lines rights-of-ways for large generating utility companies, Georgia Power Company and Oglethorpe Power Company. After amassing over 20 years of supervisory and management of Oglethorpe Power Company Land Department, Robinson formed VCI in 1989.
“In our initial five years, our Right-of-Way Acquisition team performed a lot of power line acquisition work, securing sub-station sites, school properties, water and sewer lines projects and road projects for local governments, and state agencies,” said Robinson. In addition, VCI acquired peaking gas turbine sites in Georgia and Alabama and properties for a 1500 mega-watt dual cycle gas/steam power plant for Morgan Stanley Capital Group of New York, located in Alabama. “Since 1994 we’ve evolved to become a turnkey tower site acquisition company.”
VCI has tackled various large-scale projects over the years for many repeat clients, including Southern Company affiliates, Southern Linc, Southern Company Services, Georgia Power Company, Alabama Power Company, Mississippi Power Company, and Gulf Power Company. Along with co-location projects, VCI has expertise with “drop and swap” tower projects for Southern Company Services existing towers and this work is ongoing.
Below is a timeline of key projects that demonstrate VCI’s expertise in Project Management of build-to-suit and co-location projects:
Early 90s –
“Since 1994, we’ve had the pleasure of working with Southern Linc, serving Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida. This long-term partnership is a testament to our dedication and commitment to our customers, resulting in over 950 Southern Linc sites developed initially,” said Robinson.
VCI partnered with Southern Linc to build out their Motorola iDEN systems across the Southeast, acquiring sites for new builds. Site acquisition, project management, co-lo coordination, third party project billing and construction management services were included in this new build out. VCI has continued to partner with Southern Linc and Southern Company Services on many other projects over the years.
VCI has provided AT&T with Right-of-Way work on hundreds of Remote Terminal landline facilities and fiber cable rights-of-way around metro Atlanta.
Early to Mid-2000s
In 2004 – 2006, VCI partnered with Cingular Wireless, now AT&T, on a total turnkey development for the Cingular Wireless Road Runner project. VCI provided complete turnkey development for 45 proposed sites, 30 new build sites and 15 co-location sites in Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi. VCI facilitated hiring all third-party services, including environmental, geotechnical, engineering, surveyors and title attorneys plus handled project management from inception to completion, and provided consolidated billing. According to Robinson, “The carrier only wanted to set up equipment on the pad and turn on the power, that’s it. It was our job to provide the completed tower, antennas, lines, pads and civil site work in preparation for that to happen.”
2015 to Present
VCI partnered with Southern Linc for the conversion from the iDEN system to 4G LTE Broadband System. This project included the deployment of 1,260 sites across Alabama, Georgia, the Gulf Panhandle of Florida, and Southeast Mississippi.
In 2015, Southern Linc changed to the 4G LTE broadband system, aiming to decommission the system across 950 sites and add 310 new Greenfield sites. VCI Site Acquisition Agents, Project Managers, and Construction Managers handled the management of the project, including hundreds of co-location sites.
Value Concepts, Inc has completed and is currently providing turnkey services for hundreds of tower and pole site acquisitions as well as installations for automated meter reading integration (AMI) equipment for Southern Company Services, Alabama Power, Georgia Power, Gulf Power, Mississippi Power and Nicor Gas.
“In 2015, we also re-branded our company, involving the entire team in our logo re-design. We came up with the ‘X’ on the map because the Southern Linc RF Engineers would provide us a search ring map with an “x” on it. The first question they would ask us was if the site we had acquired was right on target. “We strive to be ‘right on target’ every time,” said Robinson. “We want our customers to know that we work hard for them to provide accurate quality results.”
VCI’s Build to Suit Draft Reimbursement Program
VCI created a Build to Suit Draft Reimbursement program for Southern Linc. Robinson wanted to level the playing field for small tower development companies, omitting the “cherry-picking” of the best sites that create unfair opportunities for the tower developer. He developed an alternate reimbursement program for Build to Suits for Southern Linc.
Robinson explained that for future companies and Tier1 Carriers this program will substantially reduce most, if not all, of the customer’s front-end costs.
“With our reimbursement program, we can save telecommunication carriers the total expense of initial site development costs. VCI has a proven track record of accomplishing this with Southern Linc,” said Robinson. The reimbursement program compensates the carrier for site acquisition, zoning and permitting, surveying, engineering, environmental, geotechnical and power line service development costs and billing of all third party services.
From engineering to titles and surveys, all front-end costs are refunded. VCI offers a master contract for each project that covers reimbursement as outlined in the site license agreement once the tower is developed. With projects featuring co-location, the second and third carriers’ rent is reduced. There is a cost revenue sharing for the carrier, reducing the initial tower ground rent with the addition of the 2nd or 3rd carrier, additional long-term savings.
“Our dedicated staff, most with twenty to twenty-five years of experience in the industry, made all these projects a reality. Our project managers are ‘specialists,’ understanding everything they need to know about a client to make the process go smoothly, especially when it comes to dealing with American Tower, SBA and Crown Castle on co-lo management services,” Robinson added. “Our construction managers are seasoned and extremely knowledgeable regarding site development issues, which make a difference in preparing a detailed Scope of Work for the bidding process.”
Value Concepts, Inc. offers experience customers can trust with “Right on Target” services including tower site development, site acquisition, zoning and building permits, project management (co-location and third-party services), turnkey construction management and project billing. Servicing a diverse range of clientele, VCI’s professional and experienced staff manages all aspects of a project for wireless telecom companies, tower developers, utilities, pipeline companies, federal, state, local government agencies, and private services enterprises. For more information or to contact a representative, visit https://www.vci-atl.com.