LICT Corp., a publicly-held company with several rural service provider subsidiaries, plans to spin off one of those subsidiaries into a separately traded entity. The subsidiary, currently known as Michigan Broadband, will be known as MachTen after the spinoff, which is expected to occur on August 14.
The plan, which has been approved by LICT’s board of directors, is for LICT shareholders to receive a distribution of 150 shares of MachTen common stock for every share of LICT common stock owned as of the record date of 5 PM ET yesterday. The pro-rata distribution will be made at 11:59 PM ET on August 14.
The separation will make LICT and MachTen completely independent publicly traded companies. MachTen shares will trade on the OTC Markets Group (OTCQB) under the symbol MACT. Its barebones website indicates that its headquarters will be in Traverse City, MI.
Traverse City is a burgeoning resort town on Lake Michigan.
Michigan Broadband was founded in 1908 as Upper Peninsula Telephone Company (UPTC) and incorporated in 1927 as Wallace Telephone Company. It was acquired by LICT in 1996.
Michigan Broadband operates as UPTC and Michigan Central Broadband Company (MCBC) within the state of Michigan, where it provides broadband and voice services to 19 local exchanges (15 in the Upper Peninsula and four in the Lower Peninsula). It covers about 3,500 square miles and owns more than 700 miles of fiber.
“This is a very exciting time for MachTen stakeholders – our customers, our Michigan-based team, and our shareholders,” said MachTen CEO Dan Miller in a press release. “Michigan Broadband is a well respected provider of communications services, and is well positioned to benefit from several demographic trends.”
LICT Corp. is a holding company whose 11 subsidiaries focus on broadband and telecommunications services. The companies operate as incumbent rural local exchange carriers and as competitive local exchange carriers (RLECs and CLECs). These entities serve subscribers using a range of technologies, including DSL, fiber, fixed wireless access and cable modems.
Last August, Adtran said that Michigan Broadband Services was deploying an end-to-end broadband platform. The platform consists of the vendor’s 10G fiber access platform with Combo PON technology.
MachTen isn’t the only company serving Michigan’s Upper Peninsula that has made headlines recently. Earlier this year, local media reported that two providers — Peninsula Fiber and Winn Telephone Company – were seeking to merge.