Connecticut union boss backs AT&T-Frontier deal
CWA Local 1298 President William Henderson III has done an about-face and now says he supports AT&T's (NYSE: T) sale of landline and U-verse businesses to Frontier Communications.
Henderson previously opposed the sale because he said neither Frontier nor AT&T had issued a whole lot of information about their business plans. Since then, Frontier has promised there will be no layoffs through 2018 and that it would maintain healthcare coverage, pensions and a 401(k) retirement plan funding match.
Frontier, in announcing the $2 billion cash deal with AT&T last December, said it could achieve $200 million in annual savings without reducing AT&T's landline and U-verse workforces. Last month the company issued a press release saying it would add 85 new union jobs, among other incentives.
"That's a huge stability factor for the people who work at AT&T and are making this transition," said Henderson, calling Frontier "a company that's concerned with service and the people who work for them."
For its part, Frontier President and COO Daniel J. McCarthy issued a statement saying he was necessarily pleased with Henderson's turnabout.
"Our discussions about the Connecticut acquisition have been open, honest and ongoing," the statement added.
If all goes well, and the FCC approves, the acquisition will be completed in the last quarter of 2014, providing Frontier with almost 3,000 Connecticut workers and a million statewide customers.
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