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Recent News // News Release: Connected Tennessee Report Details Broadband’s Impact on Businesses and Economy

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Survey of Business Technology Adoption Shows Broadband an Economic Driver Vital to Continuing Recovery

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Nashville, TN – Connected Tennessee today released a comprehensive report detailing the key role broadband plays in business performance and the implications for a continuing economic recovery. Online sales in Tennessee account for approximately $4.4 billion in annual sales revenue, including approximately $1.2 billion for businesses owned by women or minorities.

The report, titled Technology Adoption Among Tennessee Businesses, is based on a scientific survey of 807 business establishments in Tennessee.

“These findings have important implications for all policymakers and business leaders in Tennessee,” said Connected Nation President and COO Tom Ferree. “Expanding broadband access, adoption, and use is a proven driver of economic growth and is vital to ensure the United States’ place in the global digital economy.” 

Among the report’s key findings:

  • Broadband-connected businesses bring in approximately $300,000 more in annual median revenues than non-broadband adopting businesses
  • 42,000 Tennessee businesses use the Internet to advertise job openings or accept job applications, including 4,000 that only accept job applications via the Internet
  • 37,000 businesses in Tennessee are still not connected to broadband and are unable to actively participate in the digital global economy
  • 85% of Tennessee businesses use computer technology for their work
  • 78,000 Tennessee businesses have websites
  • Online sales in Tennessee account for approximately $4.4 billion in annual sales revenue

“Consider all the business that is done online with customers, suppliers, and governmental reporting,” said Director of the Hickman County Department of Economic and Community Development Daryl Phillips. “Imagine doing business in a rural area and not being able to efficiently do those tasks as your competitors can. Affordable broadband access has become essential for sustainable business.”

For several years, Connected Tennessee’s parent organization, Connected Nation, has worked to quantify the impact that increased broadband availability and utilization has on the economy. Connected Tennessee was one of the first statewide efforts to study broadband among businesses starting back in 2007. The broadband and business study is an annual study to provide insights in the business side of broadband adoption.

Across Tennessee, 72% of businesses subscribe to broadband service, a significant increase from 2010 when 65% of businesses subscribed.

Connected Tennessee’s Business Technology Assessment was conducted as part of the State Broadband Initiative (SBI) grant program, funded by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). The business survey results have been independently peer reviewed, and this survey will be used by state and local leaders to help drive increased adoption and use of broadband.

Through broadband mapping, education, and research such as this business survey, nonprofit Connected Tennessee has been working on promoting broadband access, adoption, and use since 2007. Find out more at

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