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FairPoint Communications, Inc.
TypeSubsidiary
Nasdaq: FRP
IndustryCommunications Services
Founded1991; 32 years ago (1991)
HeadquartersCharlotte, North Carolina, USA
Key people
Paul H Sunu, Chief Executive Officer; Rose Hauser, Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer
ProductsInternet services, Local wireline, Cable television
Revenue$1,274.62 million[1]
−$68.53 million
Number of employees
3,300[2]
ParentConsolidated Communications
WebsiteOfficial website

FairPoint Communications, Inc. was an American operator of communication services. FairPoint's services include local and long distance phone service, data, Internet, broadband, television, business communications solutions and fiber services.[3] Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, it served 31 markets in 17 states, mostly in rural areas. FairPoint, along with Frontier Communications, had been at the forefront of acquiring Verizon landline operations.

History

FairPoint was founded as MJD Communications Inc. in 1991, and was established as an incumbent local exchange carrier (ILEC) which gave it certain rights and obligations regarding providing service to rural areas.

The company acquired the Cass County Telephone Company in 2006, integrating its operations into FairPoint Communications Missouri. It also acquired the Germantown Independent Telephone Company in Germantown, Ohio.

Northern New England expansion

In 2007, FairPoint had about 330,000 access points or customers. In that year, Verizon Communications announced plans to sell its landline operations in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont (Northern New England Spinco) to FairPoint for $2.7 billion. Of that amount, $1.7 billion would go to Verizon Communications in cash and debt and approximately $1.015 billion would go to Verizon shareholders in FairPoint common stock. Verizon would hold no stock.

After extensive federal and state regulatory review and approval, the purchase became effective March 31, 2008, for a price of $2.4 billion. State regulators sought a lower figure out of concerns that excess debt would hamper service and expansion.

Approximately 1.6 million phone customers and 230,000 internet users in the three states were added to FairPoint's customer base, with the result that the Northern New England customers represented 85% of FairPoint's customers.[4]

This increase made FairPoint Communications the 8th largest phone company in the United States.[5]

Bankruptcy

On May 5, 2009 FairPoint indicated in its 2009 first quarter report that it was "considering engaging a financial advisor to evaluate its current capital structure and to explore options with respect to a potential restructuring." It also acknowledged that it was "at risk of failing to comply with the interest coverage covenant contained in its credit facility as early as the covenant measurement period ending June 30, 2009."[6]

On October 26, 2009, FairPoint Communications filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.[7][8]

The company emerged from bankruptcy in January 2011.[9]

Verizon later lost its remaining money it made on the sale.[10]

Payphone sale

FairPoint payphone in Randolph, Vermont in 2012
FairPoint payphone in Randolph, Vermont in 2012

On May 22, 2012, FairPoint announced that it would sell its pay telephone operations to Pacific Telemanagement Services. The deal includes its 4,000 payphones operated through Northern New England Telephone Operations and Telephone Operating Company of Vermont. Fairpoint announced that the phones have become unprofitable at about $1 million in revenue.[11]

2014 Northern New England strike

FairPoint employees voted to strike on October 7, 2014, three days after FairPoint froze employee pensions.[12] The strike was the year's longest work stoppage.[13] Leaders of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) and the Communications Workers of America (CWA) said that FairPoint management had abandoned the bargaining process on August 27 after refusing to compromise on any substantive issue since negotiations began.[14]

After 131 days, the strike ended with a new three-year contract in place.[15]

Purchase by Consolidated Communications

In December 2016 FairPoint was purchased by Consolidated Communications for $1.5 billion including assumption of debt. The acquisition closed in July 2017. The combined company operates under the Consolidated Communications name.[16]

Local operating companies

FairPoint owned the following operating companies:

Former operating companies

See also

References

  1. ^ "Financial Statements for FairPoint Communications Inc". Google Finance. Retrieved November 6, 2014.
  2. ^ "Stock Quotes & Company News: Fairpoint Communications". Reuters. Archived from the original on August 5, 2011. Retrieved November 6, 2014.
  3. ^ "Corporate Profile". FairPoint Communications. Archived from the original on December 29, 2014. Retrieved December 28, 2014.
  4. ^ "Consolidated Communications - Internet, Data, Cloud for Homes & Business". Archived from the original on May 16, 2008. Retrieved May 21, 2008.
  5. ^ "FairPoint, Verizon To Form Nation's 8th Largest Phone Company | WRAL TechWire". January 16, 2007. Retrieved September 29, 2021.
  6. ^ "FairPoint Communications, Inc. - Investors - Earnings and Press Releases". phx.corporate-ir.net. Retrieved November 6, 2014.
  7. ^ "FairPoint phone company files for bankruptcy". Archived from the original on October 29, 2009. Retrieved October 26, 2009.
  8. ^ "FairPoint Communications Chapter 11 Petition" (PDF). PacerMonitor. PacerMonitor. Retrieved June 8, 2016.
  9. ^ "FairPoint meets broadband commitment in Maine". News & Observer. January 27, 2011. Retrieved February 3, 2011.[permanent dead link]
  10. ^ "Verizon to Pay $95M to Settle FairPoint Acquisition Row - Law360".
  11. ^ "FairPoint Communications Announces Sale of Payphone Operations - Mark…". Archived from the original on September 5, 2012.
  12. ^ "New England FairPoint Members Strike". IBEW. October 17, 2014. Retrieved March 14, 2022.
  13. ^ Fishell, Darren (February 12, 2015). "FairPoint strike was country's largest, only ongoing strike started in 2014". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved March 14, 2022.
  14. ^ "FairPoint Freezes Pensions of Nearly 2,000 Northern New England Employees". Fairness@Fairpoint. Archived from the original on December 14, 2014. Retrieved November 6, 2014.
  15. ^ Fishell, Darren (February 22, 2015). "FairPoint unions accept contract concessions to end lengthy strike". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved March 14, 2022.
  16. ^ Consolidated snaps up FairPoint for $1.5B, adds 3K on-net buildings, fiber to the tower footprint Sean Buckley, Fierce Telecom, December 5, 2016
  17. ^ "Local Calling Guide: Area code/prefix search. Accessed February 14, 2012". Localcallingguide.com. Retrieved November 7, 2014.
  18. ^ "Local Calling Guide: Area code/prefix search. Accessed February 14, 2012". Localcallingguide.com. Retrieved November 7, 2014.
  19. ^ "Member Companies :: Syringa Networks". Syringanetworks.net. Archived from the original on November 7, 2014. Retrieved November 7, 2014.