“With a battered financial sheet and a tattered reputation, FairPoint filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Monday, barely 18 months after becoming the dominant telecommunications company in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.
The bankruptcy filing was widely anticipated and fulfilled critics’ predictions that FairPoint was taking on more than it could handle when it bought the Verizon properties for $2.3 billion….
FairPoint, based in Charlotte, N.C., owns and operates phone companies in 18 states with a total of 1.65 million lines. Its largest holdings are in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.
The company voluntarily filed for bankruptcy after agreeing on a deal with key lenders that would lower its debt from $2.7 billion to $1 billion and significantly cut its interest expenses, CEO David Hauser said. The plan is subject to approval by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Southern District of New York.
Hauser said the filing will not affect the company’s day-to-day operations or its efforts to expand its high-speed Internet network in northern New England.
‘From a customer point of view, this is a nonevent,’ he said…
Regulators and politicians said they would look out for the interests of FairPoint’s customers and workers. The regulatory boards in Maine and New Hampshire said they have hired bankruptcy specialists to help during the process. Staff members from the three states’ regulatory boards planned to meet with FairPoint’s management and staff on Monday…
Meredith Hatfield, New Hampshire’s consumer advocate, said the challenge now will be advocating for customers’ interests and getting FairPoint to follow through on its commitments,” quoting the AP in The Olympian.
THIS IS NOW TWO MAJOR CORPORATE FAILURES WITH OFFICES IN YELM –
THIS IN ADDITION TO LAST MONTH’S VENTURE FINANCIAL’S BANK FAILURE.