Birch Communications is an Atlanta, Georgia-based provider of IP-based communications, network broadband, cloud computing, and information technology services to small, mid-sized, enterprise and wholesale business customers in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Founded in 1996 in the wake of the 1996 Telecommunications Act, several years later the company began acquiring other telecom companies in an effort to increase its network size and service offerings. Birch Communications raised $77.5 million in funding in 2011, and $110 million in funding in 2012 after it financed a new $90 million facility. Atlanta Business Chronicle named Birch one of Atlantas Top 50 Private Companies in 2013, and that year company revenues were approximately $207 million. Birch Communications also acquired Cbeyond in 2014 for $323 million, which expanded Birch’s cloud service offerings. In September 2014, Birch announced that they undergone 24 acquisitions overall, worth more than $500 million. Birch has regional operations centers in Atlanta, Macon, Georgia and Emporia, Kansas with approximately 1,400 employees. Tony Tomae serves as Birch’s president and chief executive officer. Birch was founded in 1996 as Access Integrated Networks by Vincent M. Oddo and partners. Initially the headquarters of the IT service provider were located in Macon, Georgia, near Atlanta, Georgia. Access was formed directly in the wake of the Telecom Act of 1996, and initially the company was a "re-seller of telecom services focused on the under-served small- and medium-sized business customer segments." Using a business model developed by its founders such as Vince Oddo, the company used a different funding model than many other competitive local exchange carriers in that they weren't reliant on venture capitalists. By 1997, the company had a client base of around 100.