Ovum: Qwest tightens up for buying & selling

Qwest Communications is tightening ship to either acquire new assets or sell off existing ones, according to Ovum. Last week the company closed down a number of call centers and restructured its debt, putting it in a better financial position that potentially avoids the risk of selling off its long-haul network.

Qwest said it plans to close customer service call centers in Colorado, Arizona and Nebraska by July 15. It also wrapped up a $810.5 million debt package that comes due on May 1, 2016. Closing the call centers will save Qwest some operational expenses with the elimination of 300 jobs; more customer exchanges are being conducted through IM and email than voice currently.

Net proceeds of the debt offering will be put to paying down its old debit, as well as funding and refinancing investments in its other assets. Ovum argues that the two moves increase Qwest's flexibility in 2009 for either trying to acquire some assets or making it look less needy should it put its long-haul network on the block. The combination of debt restructuring and lower operating expenses should lessen the need for selling to pay down debt.  

For more:
- Ovum analyzes Qwest's motives. Post.

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