SPOTLIGHT: Report: Rift existed between Level 3 execs

Following up on Level 3 COO Kevin O'Hara's departure from the company, Light Reading suggests that O'Hara and CFO Sunit Patel, who was retained at the same time O'Hara's resignation was announced, had a power struggle that resulted in O'Hara getting pushed out. Light Reading quotes an unnamed source referring to the power struggle, but then quotes Donna Jaegers, the analyst well-known for her close coverage of both Level 3 and fellow Colorado firm Qwest Communications, as saying O'Hara and Patel had their "fair share of disagreements."

The story also says Level 3 CEO James Crowe came back re-energized from pituitary tumor surgery last fall, and became more involved in company operations than he had been previously. After the announcement of O'Hara's departure earlier this week, some readers probably already jumped to the conclusion there may have been a power struggle, but it will be interesting to see what happens next--whether or not Level 3 makes more changes in the company's structure, workforce or management to counter the hangover the telco is suffering after a long M&A binge.

For more:
- read this report at Light Reading

Related article:
- Telecom legend Crowe had surgery on a benign tumor last August