In 1982, Ace Telephone expanded operations to Michigan. The Northern Telephone Company and the Mesick Telephone Company, were acquired. With a longstanding parent company to guide the way, the two Michigan companies were combined and the journey to providing improved phone services to Mesick, Buckley, South Boardman, Hoxeyville, Copemish and Thompsonville began. Facilities were upgraded within two years, replacing party lines with private lines. The company was now able to bring telephone service to hundreds of people who had requested it previously.
In 1986 we acquired the telephone company in Fort Atkinson, Iowa. Besides gaining more territory, technological advances also were occurring in the late 80’s for Ace. The use of fiber optic cable, which could carry faster and clearer signal, was first installed from Lanesboro to Peterson, Minnesota in 1988. In 1994 Ace began offering Internet services. Within a couple of years, Voice Mail and Caller ID were also available to customers in nearly every exchange.
In 1999, Ace again celebrated a first. We became a Competitive Local Exchange Carrier (CLEC), offering phone services to Caledonia, Minnesota. This meant that Ace was now competing with an incumbent telephone company for customers in this exchange. This was the first time Ace faced competition by another provider.
Due to significant growth in the products and services we offered, it was obvious that Ace had matured into much more than a telephone company, therefore we changed our name to better describe that. In 2000 our name became Ace Communications Group.
By 2002, we began offering digital TV in our La Crescent exchange and eventually expanded that offering to Houston, Rushford and Caledonia, Minnesota. By 2008 digital TV was available in nearly all of our exchanges.