King of the Kitsap Internet

DONOBi, Silverdale’s very own Internet service provider (ISP) is inexorably absorbing the competition.

DONOBi owners claim they are now the largest ISP in Kitsap County. The only bigger one is OlyPen — the Olympic Peninsula ISP, said Mike King, director of network operations for DONOBi.

Over the two years of its short life, DONOBi has acquired, NET-NW, Naroons, Silverlink, Bandwagon, Last Mile Network and (the

last two at Moses Lake) and most recently, TSCnet.

“We estimate we now have between (one out of six to one out of 10) of the kitsap County ISP customer base,” King said Thursday.

DONOBi officials describe the TSCnet merger as amicable. Five TSCnet employees were absorbed into DONOBi. An unknown number of other TSCnet workers were laid-off, however, according to sources.

“We purchased their customers (3,100) Dec. 23,” said Melissa Tippets, DONOBi operations manager. “We’re at the mercy of Qwest to purchase additional dial-up lines to handle the new modems” for the new customers.

DONOBi and TSCnet were no strangers to each other.

“We’d been working with them on several joint projects” when TSCnet became available to merge, she said, adding it was a natural for TSCnet to join DONOBi. Danley Franks was TSCnet’s former owner.

DONOBi has eight voice phone lines and they have been busy. A visit to DONOBi’s offices at 9301 Linder Way N.W. on Thursday showed why: They had 20 people working, and no one was sitting down.

According to Tippets, “busy” would be the understatement of the year for DONOBi.

“They best thing customers can do for now is leave a messages on voice mail or e-mail, and we’ll call them back,” she said. DONOBi intends to add another voice line and more lines for modems soon. The company had 1,100 ISP lines as of Tuesday, Dec. 31.

“Having to do this over the holidays is even harder,” said Tippets. “It’s been insane around here the last five days,” she said when interviewed Jan. 7.

“Qwest has been really good to us,” she said. “We had to get on-line in in 60 days,” she added. “But they put us on in nine days. Their reps call daily to see how we’re doing.”

She also said NoaNet has been helping them and Kitsap PUD is in the process of installing new fiber optical lines that will greatly expand the market.

DONOBi has quick access to eight search engines: Google, altavista, metacrawler, HOTBOT, LYCOS, excite, YAHOO and Netscape.

It costs $20 per month for unlimited dial-up service with DONOBi. The company also has quarterly plans, $57; semi-annual, $108; and annual, $204.

The company can be reached by calling 337-7939 for customer service. You can e-mail .

The company’s name is often thought to be Japanese, said Tippets. In reality, it’s composed of the first two letters of the three men who started the business: Don Griffee, Noel Parrish and Bill Wright.

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