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DALLAS-It’s the “Don’t Mess with Texas” attitude that seemingly keeps high-tech providers in check, even those that have gone belly up.

Massive quantities of abandoned telecom equipment and large rooftop satellite dishes really aren’t a problem as far as Roland Garcia, account executive of Dallas-based Harwood Technologies, is concerned. “I don’t know that we would even get this in Texas.”

Garcia says the type of equipment that would be left could be readily tossed in the garbage can. “It’s almost totally unobtrusive,” he tells GlobeSt.com. “It’s not massive equipment. It’s a small satellite or small box.” Many are panels that are the size of a sheet of paper. Garcia knows of only one piece of abandoned equipment in Harwood’s eight million sf. It’s the size of a VCR and it’s sitting on a shelf. Some day, he’ll get around to tossing it away.

Perhaps, it’s the due diligence that Texas building owners put into the process before granting access to commercial structures. Wannabe providers must get past the upfront fees and contracts, which high-profile owners tool and re-tool to make sure they don’t get stuck with the goods and more importantly, that tenants aren’t left hanging without service.

In a previous GlobeSt.com interview, Ft. Worth-based Crescent Real Estate Equities Co.’s Howard Lovett said the REIT’s carefully crafted contract kept the providers in line. Only one provider up to that point had defaulted of the scores that passed Crescent’s test.

Garcia says the high-tech shakeout, at last count, had 60 providers nationwide going under. All were offering services in the Dallas-Ft. Worth metroplex and all had equipment in property management offices. But, he reiterates, leftover equipment is just not a big enough deal to be a problem. Many of those defunct companies are in various stages of mergers so the equipment’s intact and ultimately could be turned back on under a new moniker.

As for leases, it’s no different than “a tenant that goes out of business,” Garcia says. Some struggling companies have offered to swap out rates with a commission for the building owner. Sometimes it works, but all too often it doesn’t.

At Harwood, it’s strongly recommended that providers buy lines from the well-established in the telecommunications industry. It keeps the equipment that’s needed to do the job practically nil.

The high-tech fallout has changed the scene somewhat. The phones are no longer ringing off the hook from the IT sales forces. Garcia says he hasn’t had a call in six months from a company seeking building access in comparison to a steady stream in 2000. And those calls, those requests for building access, took a lot of man hours to service before everyone got to sit down at the signing table.

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