Latest on Pending CenturyLink/Qwest Merger [telecom]

Here is the latest info on the pending merger of CenturyLink and Qwest. CenturyLink itself is a recent merger of CenturyTel and Embarq. Embarq was the 2006 spinoff of Sprint's ILEC operations which was mostly legacy United Tel and Centel.

The pending CenturyLink/Qwest merger was announced on 22-April-2010. On that same date, there was a joint filing with the Securities and Exchange commission, but I don't have an "approval" date. I don't know if the SEC actually has to "approve" of this merger.

On 15-July-2010, the FTC/DOJ closed the waiting period of the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act, which also has something to do with the IRS.

On 24-August-2010, the majority of shareholders of both companies each approved of the pending merger.

And here chronologically is the state-by-state (including required approval of the Washington DC regulatory agency) approval. Not all states where Qwest and/or CenturyLink operates in are required to approve of the pending merger though. Some states don't seem to have it under their legislative jurisdiction to require approval of such mergers, sell-offs, transactions, etc. Each state regulatory agency is different!

14-June-2010 California PUC 15-June-2010 Hawaii PUC 29-June-2010 Ohio PUC 06-July-2010 Nevada PUC 07-July-2010 Maryland PSC 16-July-2010 Regulatory Commission of Alaska 28-July-2010 Georgia PSC 03-August-2010 West Virginia PSC 24-August-2010 New York State PSC 30-August-2010 District of Columbia PSC 14-September-2010 Mississippi PSC 17-September-2010 Louisiana PSC 24-September-2010 Virginia State (Commonwealth?) Corporation Commission 14-October-2010 Pennsylvania PUC 03-November-2010 Iowa Utilities Board 14-December-2010 Montana PSC 15-December-2010 Colorado PUC 16-December-2010 New Jersey Board of Public Utilities 04-January-2011 Nebraska PSC 05-January-2011 Utah PSC

The following four states still need to approve. In each of them, and all are states where Qwest is the legacy Regional Bell Company (which was known as US-West from 1984 divestiture until 2000 when US-West and LCI/Qwest merged), the commission STAFF has approved recommendation of the pending merger, but the board itself still needs to vote for official approval:

Arizona State Corporation Commission Oregon PUC Washington (State) Utilities and Transportation Commission Minnesota PUC

It is possible that an announcement on each of these states' boards themselves might come in January or February 2011.

And THEN, the FCC still needs to approve.

If all approvals are reached, the actual official merger could come sometime during the 2nd Quarter of 2011.

I have heard nothing about any possible name change. It might happen that the Qwest name will remain within its legacy "US-West" states for a year or two (or even up to five years), as "Qwest, a CenturyLink Company", and then the CenturyLink name/logo could eventually replace Qwest? OR, the CenturyLink name/logo could replace Qwest within months of the official effective date of the merger? Maybe a new "joint" name could be chosen, such as "CenturyQwest"? But so far, nothing has been announced from what I can tell, as to any possible name changes.

Mark J. Cuccia markjcuccia at yahoo dot com Lafayette LA, formerly of New Orleans LA pre-Katrina

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Mark J. Cuccia
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