Anterix (NASDAQ: ATEX) and Evergy (NYSE: EVRG) today announced the signing of an agreement providing Evergy the use of Anterix's 900 MHz broadband spectrum throughout Evergy's 28,130-square mile service territory in Kansas and Missouri. The long-term lease agreement is for 20 years, with two 10-year renewal options. Evergy plans to utilize the Anterix spectrum to deploy a private wireless broadband communications network using LTE technology to support its grid modernization initiatives.
"Evergy is an innovative leader in the utility sector, and we are pleased to welcome them as the third utility in just nine months to sign a contract with Anterix for access to our 900 MHz spectrum for private LTE, joining Ameren and San Diego Gas & Electric," said Rob Schwartz, Anterix's President & CEO. "We're also excited about this relationship because Evergy's service area shares 25 Missouri counties with Ameren's territory, setting the stage for the two utilities to demonstrate the first instance of collaboration towards a 'network of networks' using 900 MHz private LTE." Under its earlier arrangement with Anterix, Ameren leases the 900 MHz band spectrum throughout its service territory in Illinois and Missouri, including those 25 counties.
When the Federal Communications Commission identified 6 MHz of 900 MHz spectrum for broadband in May 2020, Evergy's land mobile radio system was a significant user of narrowband channels within that block, thus qualifying as a "complex system" under the new rules. That same month, Evergy agreed to exchange spectrum with Anterix, allowing Evergy to move its land mobile radio system to different 900 MHz frequencies outside the broadband allocation, thus freeing the 6 MHz of broadband spectrum for a potential future LTE system.
"Smart grid technologies have a growing importance for our grid modernization efforts as we continue to transform our operations to a focus on clean, safe and reliable energy. Today's agreement with Anterix provides a key component of the communications foundation required to help advance these initiatives, which are not only important for increased safety and efficiency, but are also crucial to maintain a resilient grid in the future," said Kevin Bryant, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Evergy.
Since its creation from the 2018 merger of local energy providers Westar and Kansas City Power & Light, Evergy has been working to consolidate the operations of the merged utilities to best serve its 1.6 million customers. Its new agreement with Anterix will help achieve that goal. The private LTE network using Anterix's 900 MHz spectrum will enable a secure broadband communications capability throughout the combined service territory and facilitate the unified adoption of smart grid applications.
About Anterix and Evergy
At Anterix, we are focused on delivering transformative broadband that enables the modernization of critical infrastructure for the energy, transportation, logistics and other sectors of our economy. As the largest holder of licensed spectrum in the 900 MHz band (896-901/935-940 MHz) throughout the contiguous United States, plus Hawaii, Alaska, and Puerto Rico, we are uniquely positioned to enable the private LTE broadband solutions that support secure, resilient, and customer-controlled operations. For more information, visit: www.anterix.com
Evergy, Inc. (NYSE: EVRG) serves approximately 1.6 million customers in Kansas and Missouri. We were formed in 2018 when long-term local energy providers KCP&L and Westar Energy merged. We are a leader in renewable energy, supplying nearly half of the power we provide to homes and businesses from emission-free generation. We support our local communities where we live and work and strive to meet the needs of customers through energy savings and innovative solutions.