CHRISTIANSTED — Orbitel, a local Internet service provider based on St. Croix, is going out of business for good.
The company, which for years had provided high-speed fiber Internet service to commercial concerns, only recently began to offer residential service to customers.
The closure of Orbitel had been the source of much speculation, but confirmation came following an email sent to a host of internet service providers (ISPs) in the territory from the Virgin Islands Next Generation Network (viNGN), a government-owned entity that provides fiber internet to many local ISPs, stating that Orbitel was no longer a client.
“The Virgin Islands Next Generation Network no longer has a business agreement with Orbitel, LLC,” viNGN wrote. “Furthermore, we want to ensure the process of maintaining and transitioning the internet service for the end user is as smooth as possible.”
Orbitel did not immediately return telephone calls seeking comment.
Meanwhile, sources said that this was a big opportunity for Viya — because to this day Broadband VI cannot connect its meager share of the Virgin Islands market to the Internet.
“Here’s a story for you,” a source said. “Orbitel went out of business. Broadband VI is calling customers wanting them to switch. But they can’t connect the customers that they already have — so why bother calling more?”
And even as Orbitel goes out of business, its website, as this week, was still active.
Orbitel web site is now inactive.