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Verizon selling part of hardline phone business to Frontier

04.03.15

MARCH 2015, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton Edition of The Union News

Verizon selling part of hardline phone business to Frontier

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSSWB@AOL.COM

REGION, March 2nd- The once very profitable copper wire land-line telephone business, which most was operated by Verizon Communications, still makes money but has seen the use of the wireline decreased by around twenty-five percent over the past several decades because of the increase of wireless services.

Recently it was announced that Verizon Communications Inc., a mostly unionized company, has agreed to sell about a quarter of its hardline telephone business to Frontier Communications Corporation.

The Communications Workers of America (CWA) Union and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Union represent thousands of Verizon Communications workers.

Verizon Communications stated that they will sell part of their system to Frontier Communications. After the deal is completed Verizon will not operate wireline telephone service in three states, Texas, California and Florida. The remaining phone business of Verizon Communications will be mostly in the Northeast and the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States. The deal must still be approved by federal regulators.

The selling of the assets to Frontier Communications will continue what Verizon began several years ago, selling off much of their land-line telephone business that they received in 2000 after Bell Atlantic merged with GTE, forming Verizon Communications.

According to Verizon, sixty-nine percent of the $127 billion of annual revenue is created through their wireless business. However, despite the need of more infrastructure in the hard-line telephone business, it still makes money.

Verizon Communications landline business is unionized. Throughout the region CWA Local 13000 represents line-repair workers while CWA Local 13500 represents mostly office workers.

Meanwhile, the CWA does represent some of the Frontier Communications Corporation workers, depending on where the employees work.

Approximately 11,000 current Verizon Communications Inc. employees will become Frontier Communications employees after the deal is completed. The majority are represented by the CWA.

Verizon Communications and Frontier Communications stated the purchase price of the network is around $10.5 billion.

Current Verizon Communications Chief Executive Lowell McAdam is the first non-hardline phone business person to lead the company. He worked within the cellular phone business.