FCC approves Lumen/Apollo Brightspeed sale

Aug. 22, 2022
Apollo announced the Brightspeed brand last November and unveiled plans to pass 1 million premises with new fiber by the end of 2023.

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has approved Lumen Technologies’ (NYSE: LUMN) sale of its incumbent local exchange carrier (ILEC) business in 20 states to funds managed by Apollo (NYSE: APO). Apollo has already christen the assets “Brightspeed” ahead of the deal’s close, a milestone the parties expect to achieve early in the fourth quarter of this year now that the transaction has received all the needed regulatory clearances.

Lumen and Apollo announced the $7.5 billion deal in August 2021 (see “Lumen to sell CenturyLink ILECs in 20 states to Apollo Funds”). The former will retain its ILEC businesses in an additional 16 states as well as its national fiber routes, associated networks, and international routes.

Apollo announced the Brightspeed brand last November and unveiled plans to pass 1 million premises with new fiber by the end of 2023 (see “Former Lumen ILEC operations rebrand as Brightspeed, reveal FTTH ambitions” and “Brightspeed sets FTTH target for 2023”). The service area includes more than 6 million homes and businesses.

“This transaction will benefit all of these customers, both in Lumen’s remaining 16-state footprint and in the 20 states moving to Brightspeed,” said Melissa Mann, Lumen vice president of public policy and government affairs. “The FCC’s approval is great news that will bring faster broadband speeds to customers across both companies.”

“The FCC’s approval paves the way for Brightspeed to help close the digital divide in communities across the country that are most in need of high-quality broadband,” added Tom Dailey, Brightspeed vice president of public policy and government affairs. “This is a significant step in our journey to begin serving customers as Brightspeed. We appreciate the efforts of all the regulators and our Lumen counterparts who worked diligently with us over this past year to achieve this milestone. We look forward to building our fiber network and participating in programs that support affordability for our new customers.”

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About the Author

Stephen Hardy | Editorial Director and Associate Publisher, Lightwave

Stephen Hardy is editorial director and associate publisher of Lightwave and Broadband Technology Report, part of the Lighting & Technology Group at Endeavor Business Media. Stephen is responsible for establishing and executing editorial strategy across the both brands’ websites, email newsletters, events, and other information products. He has covered the fiber-optics space for more than 20 years, and communications and technology for more than 35 years. During his tenure, Lightwave has received awards from Folio: and the American Society of Business Press Editors (ASBPE) for editorial excellence. Prior to joining Lightwave in 1997, Stephen worked for Telecommunications magazine and the Journal of Electronic Defense.

Stephen has moderated panels at numerous events, including the Optica Executive Forum, ECOC, and SCTE Cable-Tec Expo. He also is program director for the Lightwave Innovation Reviews and the Diamond Technology Reviews.

He has written numerous articles in all aspects of optical communications and fiber-optic networks, including fiber to the home (FTTH), PON, optical components, DWDM, fiber cables, packet optical transport, optical transceivers, lasers, fiber optic testing, and more.

You can connect with Stephen on LinkedIn as well as Twitter.

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