The U.S Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York today approved a Windstream bankruptcy exit reorganization plan. With the restructuring plan approved, the company expects to complete its financial restructuring process and emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as a privately held company in late August.

The restructured company will cut its debt by about two thirds, a total of $4 billion, and will have access to approximately $2 billion in new capital to expand 1 Gig Internet service in rural America, according to a press release. In addition, the company said it would “maintain its product and software leadership in SD-WAN and UCaaS for enterprise customers.”

Windstream Bankruptcy Exit
“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,” said Tony Thomas, Windstream president and chief executive officer, in a prepared statement about the Windstream restructuring plan approval.

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Thomas added: “We look forward to beginning this new chapter for Windstream. When we emerge, our lenders will become our new owners and strategic partners and are aligned with our long-term strategy and mission to deliver quality and reliable services. As a private company, Windstream will have increased flexibility to invest in our network, accelerate our transformation and return to growth.”

Windstream Network Map (Source: Windstream website)

Telecompetitor earlier reported that Windstream executives thought that restructuring would give the financial flexibility to achieve its goal of making 1 Gbps capable broadband available to 50% of its ILEC footprint over the next ten years. At that time, Windstream said that in addition to shedding debt through restructuring, it had reached a settlement with its REIT partner Uniti, which calls for Uniti to invest $1.75 billion in Windstream’s network over the next ten years.

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