Windstream Holdings, Inc. will soon emerge from bankruptcy proceedings and begin operating as a private company after a court ruling confirmed its reorganization plans.
The Arkansas-based data networking and communications company is planning to complete its restructuring this summer. It expects to be a privately held company by late August of 2020.
Windstream has been locked in Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings and was more than $5 billion in debut but has negotiated to have its debut whittled down as part of a restructuring deal. Uniti Group will be investing up to $1.75 million in the company for capital improvements, according to Fierce Telecom and will be buying dark fiber assets, while Windstream will transfer “certain dark fiber indefeasible rights of use rights of contract to Uniti Group.”
This settlement deal and restructuring plan was approved by U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Robert Drain in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court of New York.
“We were able to reach this important milestone thanks to the support of our financial stakeholders, as well as our customers, vendors and business partners. The Court’s confirmation of our Plan puts us on a definitive path to emerge from restructuring with a stronger balance sheet and healthy liquidity position to continue making network and software investments for the benefit of our customers,” Windstream Holdings Inc. president and CEO Tony Thomas said in a statement. “I want to thank the entire Windstream team for remaining focused on our customers and for tirelessly providing essential communications services during the reorganization process.”
As a result of the restructuring, New York hedge fund Elliott Management Corp. will become the largest owner of the new privately-held company. According to Bloomberg, Elliott will hold approximately $1.1 billion of Windstream’s capital structure.
In a video posted to Windstream’s Twitter account, Thomas said that the company is well on its way to growth as a result of the restructuring plans’ approval.
“The next step is to achieve regulatory approval and all the necessary filings have already been completed. Our financial restructuring plans have enabled us to reduce our debt by more than $4 billion or approximately two-thirds. This will provide increased flexibility to invest in our business, accelerate our transformation and return to growth.”
“Additionally, we will have access to approximately $2 billion in new capital to deploy fiber deeper into our network to deliver 1-gigabyte broadband speed to millions of households and small and mid-sized businesses.”