Gateway Fiber nearly ready for first local customers


SERVICE AREA — This map shows Gateway Fiber’s currently planned service area around Warrenton and Wright City. The beige area is currently under construction. For a closer look at the map, go to gatewayfiber.com/serving-areas/warrenton. Submitted image.
By: 
Adam Rollins
Staff Writer

Gateway Fiber, an internet service provider founded in Jonesburg, is preparing to accept its first customers in the Warrenton area while continuing to expand throughout Warrenton, Truesdale and Wright City as well.

Gateway Fiber provides internet service via fiber optic cables, which use light instead of electricity to send signals and offer superior performance over traditional networks. Crews are currently installing cables in neighborhoods between Highway M and Interstate 70 in Warrenton.

Gateway Fiber President and co-founder Heath Sellenrieck said he hopes the company can fulfill a need in the community for better internet.

“We saw a need in the market for a better service — quality service and quality customer service,” Sellenrieck said. “Our friends and family live in this area, and we’re giving them better quality of life. We’re giving the community a better chance at growth. Access to high-quality broadband is one of the top two or three things people look for now when they’re looking to buy a home.”

Gateway Fiber got its start in 2019 with several municipalities in Lincoln County, and was encouraged when local businesses and developers regularly asked them to expand into Warren County, Sellenrieck said. The company plans to have its services for the Warrenton and Wright City areas fully online this year and to expand its staff to 40 employees. Gateway Fiber also intends to move its headquarters to Wright City in the near future, Sellenrieck said.

Chief Marketing Officer John Meyer said the company is planning to bring customers on board by not only offering a better product, but also much improved customer service. Gateway Fiber is promoting its services as “fairer, friendlier, faster.”

“We realized that the opaque pricing structure and contractual relationships (of other providers)is something we vehemently disagree with,” Meyer commented. For every tier of home and business internet, he said the price offered is the price you’ll pay — no one-year price hikes or hidden fees.

“On the ‘friendlier’ side, we believe that being a local provider that picks up the phone, that makes it to scheduled installs on time, and you deal with real-life human beings, those are really meaningful ways to demonstrate that we are the friendly neighborhood provider that you can trust,” Meyer commented.

So far, he said the strategy of a better product with better customer service has led to great feedback in the areas Gateway Fiber currently serves.

The technology for fiber optic internet service is seeing growing use as a replacement for copper-wire communications, according to Chris Calbreath, Gateway Fiber’s chief technology officer and co-founder.

“Fiber is a strand of glass that signals flow through,” Calbreath explained. “Copper has some distance limitations. The further you get from the start of the signal, that signal is going to degrade. With fiber ... we can guarantee a certain speed, like a gigabit per second.”

Fiber also offers improved network capacity, which Calbreath said will allow Gateway Fiber to offer “symmetrical” internet speeds — the speed that data flows into a home will be the same speed data flows out. Traditional internet providers have drastically slower outgoing speeds, which can be a big hindrance for people who are trying to make video calls, play online games or save files to a cloud server, Calbreath said.

As part of its service, Calbreath said Gateway Fiber will provide advanced hubs for wireless connections that offer specialized features for home- or business-based internet.

“We’re looking to present an ‘internet experience’ to people, as opposed to just providing a data connection to the internet,” Calbreath commented. “I’m a 1999 Warrenton graduate, so it’s nice to bring high-speed fiber internet to Warrenton.”

For more information about Gateway Fiber, go online to gatewayfiber.com or call 888-201-4339.

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