Windstream Holdings, Inc.
Company typePrivate
Founded2006; 18 years ago (2006)
HeadquartersLittle Rock, Arkansas, U.S.
Key people
Paul H. Sunu (President & CEO)[1]
ProductsAdvanced Network Communications, including Cloud Computing and Managed Services to businesses nationwide. Broadband, Phone and Digital TV to consumers primarily in rural areas.
RevenueUS$4 billion (2023)[2]
Number of employees
11,080 (2019)[3]
  • 7029

Windstream Holdings, Inc., also doing business as Windstream Communications or Windstream, is a provider of voice and data network communications (broadband, VoIP, MPLS), and managed services (virtual servers, managed firewall, data storage, cloud-based voice, etc.), to businesses in the United States.[4] The company also offers residential broadband, phone and digital streaming TV services to consumers within its coverage area. It is the ninth largest residential telephone provider in the country[5] with service covering more than 8.1 million people in 21 states.[6][7][8]

The company was formed in 2006, when Alltel's local telephone service merged with Valor Communications Group out of part of GTE (now part of Verizon's) local telephone business in the Southwestern United States.

Windstream is a partner with DirecTV, offering satellite service to its customers.


Valor Telecom was formed in 2000 to take over GTE Southwest assets that Verizon was selling following its acquisition of GTE.

The company went public in 2005, under the name Valor Communications Group, Inc.

Change to Windstream

In 2006, Windstream Corporation formed through the spinoff of Alltel's landline business and merger with VALOR Communications Group.

Local Insight Yellow Pages

Local Insight Yellow Pages, Inc. was founded in 1984 as Alltel Publishing Corporation, and subsequently became Windstream's official directory publishing agent.

Windstream Yellow Pages published directories for former Alltel wireline, as well as directories for TDS Telecom and KLM Telephone customers, as well numerous smaller independent telephone companies. In 99% of the markets, the telephone directory published by Windstream Yellow Pages is for the Incumbent Local Exchange Carrier (ILEC) and is not a competing overlay directory.

Upon completion of the sale to Windstream Regatta Holdings, Inc., Windstream Yellow Pages was renamed Local Insight Yellow Pages. In 2007, LIR Holdings acquired CBD Media, the former advertising & publishing division of Cincinnati Bell.

In July 2009, Local Insight Regatta Holdings merged Local Insight Yellow Pages into The Berry Company, which it had acquired from AT&T.[9]

Launch of Kinetic

In October 2014, Windstream launched the Kinetic brand with the announcement of a new TV entertainment service delivered through the IPTV platform Ericsson Mediaroom.[10]

In 2017 the Kinetic brand was extended across the company's consumer and SMB product portfolio to encompass services for consumers and small businesses including Kinetic Internet, with speeds between 25-100 Mbps or higher; Kinetic Gig, with speeds of 1 Gbps over a fiber-optic network; and Kinetic Business, providing a variety of business network solutions. These complemented the Kinetic TV brand, the company's TV service that offers video on-demand and digital video recording services.[11] [12]

In February 2019, Windstream announced the introduction of its app-based television product, Kinetic TV.[13] The app was made available for connected devices, smart TVs, PCs, tablets and smartphones. Kinetic TV packages included Kinetic TV Viewing, Kinetic TV Replay, Kinetic Cloud DVR, and Kinetic Video On-Demand.[14] On April 1, 2022 Windstream discontinued Kinetic TV and replaced it with the DirecTV stream service.[15]

Kinetic by Windstream provides services to residential and business customers in 18 states. Kinetic services includes high-speed Internet, entertainment, phone and security products for homes and businesses.[16]

Bond default, bankruptcy and financial restructuring

On February 15, 2019, the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of New York ruled that Windstream had defaulted on some of its bonds. Consequent to the ruling, Windstream stock lost about 60% of its value.[17]

On February 25, 2019, Windstream filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in response to a February 15th judgment against the company for $310 million.[18][19]

In September 2020, emerging from bankruptcy as a privately held company, Windstream successfully completed its financial restructuring process and reduced its debt by over $4 billion.[20]

Expansion and sales

On May 29, 2007, the company announced that it would acquire CT Communications for $585 million. The acquisition would result in an addition of approximately 158,000 access lines and 29,000 broadband customers, nearly doubling the company's presence in North Carolina. The sale closed August 31, 2007.[21][22] The telephone operating company was renamed Windstream Concord Telephone.

In 2007, Windstream sold off its Windstream Yellow Pages unit to a private equity firm, who renamed the unit Local Insight Yellow Pages. The company has been dissolved into The Berry Company.

On May 11, 2009, the company announced that it would acquire D&E Communications of Ephrata, Pennsylvania for approximately $330 million. The acquisition would result in an addition of approximately 165,000 access lines and 44,000 high speed internet customers. The acquisition would greatly expand the company's presence in Pennsylvania, including significant expansion of its CLEC presence in seven markets in the state, including State College, PA, home of Pennsylvania State University.[23][24] The transaction closed November 10, 2009.[25]

On November 24, 2009, the company announced that it would acquire Iowa Telecom for $1.1 billion. The acquisition would result in an addition 256,000 access lines, about 95,000 high-speed Internet customers and about 26,000 digital TV customers, adding rural Iowa and Minnesota to the company.[26]

On February 8, 2010, the company acquired Nuvox, a company formed from a merger of NuVox Communications, NewSouth Communications, FDN Communications,[27] Gabriel Communications and Trivergent Communications.[28]

On August 17, 2010, the company announced that it had entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Q-Comm Corporation in a transaction valued at approximately $782 million. This includes Q-Comm’s wholly owned subsidiaries Kentucky Data Link, Inc. (KDL),[29] a fiber services provider in 22 states and Norlight, Inc.,[30] a CLEC primarily serving the Midwest. Both KDL and Norlight are based in Evansville, IN. Q-Comm subsidiaries nGenX[31] and Cinergy Metronet[32] will be spun off as independent companies prior to the close of the deal.[33]

In November 2010, the company announced that it would acquire Hosted Solutions for $310 million. Hosted Solutions is a North Carolina-based managed hosting, cloud and colocation provider with a footprint of five datacenters in Cary, Raleigh and Charlotte, North Carolina as well as Boston, Massachusetts.[34]

In August 2011, the company announced that it would acquire PAETEC Holding Corp., a Rochester, New York-based telecommunications company. As of December 1, 2011, this acquisition has been completed.[35]

After the market closed on Friday April 24, 2015 legacy rural telecom provider Windstream Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: WIN) announced that it had completed the tax-free spinoff of "select telecommunications network assets," into Communications Sales and Leasing Inc. (CS&L). This new CS&L REIT is to trade under ticker symbol (NASDAQ: CSAL). The transaction is also the catalyst for changes in the Windstream dividend and a call for a one-for-six (1:6) reverse stock split. In 2016, Windsteam sold the remaining shares in CSAL.

In January 2016, the company announced it was extending its 100 Gigabit Ethernet (100G) network from New Jersey data center operator NJFX's presence at Tata Communications' Cable Landing Station (CLS) in Wall Township, N.J., to Ashburn, Virginia's Internet hub.[36]

On November 7, 2016, Windstream announced a merger with EarthLink for about $1.1 billion in stock.[37][38]

On April 13, 2017, Windstream announced that it would acquire Broadview Networks in an all-cash transaction valued at $227 million.[39]

Change of CEO

On December 11, 2014 Windstream's CEO from 2006 to 2014, Jeffery R. (Jeff) Gardner,[40] was replaced by Tony Thomas. Jeffery R. Gardner stayed on as an adviser and member of the Board of Directors through Feb 1, 2015.[41]

Paul H. Sunu became the president and CEO of Windstream on October 30, 2023.[42] Sunu has been the chairman of the board since 2020. He is an accomplished executive with over 27 years of telecom experience, with a focus on rural telecommunication. He succeeds Tony Thomas, who has decided to depart the Company and step down from the Board, following a distinguished 17 years at Windstream.

See also


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  2. ^ "Windstream Factsheet - 4Q 2023" (PDF). Windstream Holdings. February 21, 2024. Archived (PDF) from the original on May 16, 2024. Retrieved May 16, 2024.
  3. ^ "Inline XBRL Viewer".
  4. ^ "Windstream Business Product Line Up". Telecom Carrier Reports. Retrieved 2012-03-02.
  5. ^ Leichtman Research Group, "Research Notes," Archived October 17, 2016, at the Wayback Machine First Quarter 2012, pg. 6, Windstream (#9) with 1,931,700 residential phone lines.
  6. ^ Anders, David (April 21, 2022). "Need Home Internet Service? Find the Internet Providers in Your Area". CNET. Red Ventures. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  7. ^ Anders, David (April 28, 2022). "Kinetic by Windstream Home Internet Review: Your Results May Vary". CNET. Red Ventures. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  8. ^ Anderson, Duane. "Windstream Overview and Coverage". Broadband Now. Retrieved 2014-02-12.
  9. ^ "Local Insight Regatta Holdings announces consolidation of its two operating subsidiaries under new Berry brand, July 7, 2009. Accessed March 11, 2012".
  10. ^ "Windstream to Roll Out TV Service Called 'Kinetic'". Arkansas Business. Retrieved 2024-02-23.
  11. ^ "Windstream expands Kinetic brand". S&P Global. 2017-09-12. Retrieved 2024-02-23.
  12. ^ Arnason, Bernie (2017-09-12). "Windstream Rebrand Introduces Kinetic Across Consumer & SMB Product Portfolio". Telecompetitor. Retrieved 2024-02-23.
  13. ^ Muson, Ben (2019-02-06). "Windstream taps MobiTV to launch new TV streaming product Kinetic TV". StreamTV Insider. Retrieved 2024-02-23.
  14. ^ "Windstream launches app-based Kinetic TV in Nebraska". Digital TV News. 2019-04-04. Retrieved 2024-02-23.
  15. ^ Olberding, Matt (21 April 2020). "Windstream to drop its Kinetic TV service in August, offer streaming option". Retrieved 2020-04-24.
  16. ^ "New Windstream Kinetic TV App Launches in Nebraska - Telecompetitor". Retrieved 2019-06-17.
  17. ^ Rexaline, Shanthi (2019-02-19). "The Windstream Plunge, Explained". Yahoo Finance.
  18. ^ "Windstream Files for Bankruptcy After Aurelius Court Defeat". Bloomberg. 25 February 2019.
  19. ^ "Windstream Bankruptcy Filing Will Help Struggling Telecom 'Reorganize' Finances". 26 February 2019. Retrieved 2022-09-06.
  20. ^ "Windstream Secures Future for Long-Term Growth and Technology Leadership". The Associated Press. 2020-09-21. Retrieved 2024-02-25.
  21. ^ "Windstream Corporation to Acquire CT Communications for $585 Million". Retrieved 2013-05-03.
  22. ^ "Windstream Grows NC Presence with CT Buy". Retrieved 2013-05-03.
  23. ^ "Windstream to acquire D&E Communications". Retrieved 2013-05-03.
  24. ^ Ed Gubbins May 11th, 2009 (2009-05-11). "". Retrieved 2013-05-03.((cite web)): CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  25. ^ "". 2009-11-10. Archived from the original on October 10, 2012. Retrieved 2013-05-03.
  26. ^ "The transaction is expected to close in mid 2010".
  27. ^ "CLECs FDN, NuVox merge". Connected Planet Online. March 22, 2007. Archived from the original on April 8, 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-08.
  28. ^ "NuVox Acquisition Complete". Retrieved 2013-05-03.
  29. ^ Archived August 8, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  30. ^ "". Retrieved 2013-05-03.
  31. ^ "". Archived from the original on August 8, 2010.
  32. ^ "DA 10-1669" (PDF). FCC. September 1, 2010. Archived (PDF) from the original on 31 January 2022. Retrieved November 12, 2023.
  33. ^ "Windstream to acquire Kentucky Data Link, Norlight". Retrieved 2013-05-03.
  34. ^ "Windstream to acquire Hosted Solutions" (Press release). Windstream Communications. November 4, 2010. Retrieved 2015-08-13.
  35. ^ Edwards, Adam. "Windstream Completes Acquisition of PAETEC". Telarus Industry Briefs. Retrieved 2011-12-01.
  36. ^ "Windstream establishes 100G express route in red-hot Ashburn, Va. market via NJFX". 2016-01-19. Retrieved 2016-01-30.
  37. ^ "Windstream and EarthLink to Merge in $1.1 Billion Transaction". 2016-11-07. Retrieved 2016-11-07.
  38. ^ "Windstream acquires EarthLink for $1.1B, creates 145K fiber route mile network - FierceTelecom". 7 November 2016. Archived from the original on 7 November 2016.
  39. ^ "Windstream to acquire Broadview Networks". April 13, 2017.
  40. ^ Olberding, Matt (December 14, 2006). "Windstream to split off directory business". Lincoln Journal Star. Lincoln, Nebraska: Lee Enterprises. p. 8A. Retrieved April 28, 2019 – via
  41. ^ "Windstream appoints Tony Thomas as Chief Executive Officer". Retrieved 2014-12-17.
  42. ^ "Windstream Names Paul H. Sunu Chief Executive Officer - October 30, 2023". (Press release). 30 October 2023. Retrieved 2023-12-15.