14 September 2017
| James Pearce
CenturyLink has pushed back the deadline to close its takeover of Level 3 Communications as it awaits approvals from the Federal Communications Commission, the Justice Department, and the state of California.
The US telco was due to close the
$35 billion acquisition,
agreed last November, later this month, but has now revised
the timeline for the deal, saying it expects it to close in
So far, 24 states and territories have approved or cleared
the acquisition, but the delayed deal cannot close until it is
rubber-stamped by the FCC and the DOJ. CenturyLink first filed
with the FCC in December, with the process originally due to be
completed on 24 September.
California will not vote on the deal until its next general
meeting, scheduled to take place on October 12, although the
California Administrative Law Judge has already advised state
regulators to approve the deal, saying it is in the public
The proposed deal will increase CenturyLink's network by
200,000 route miles of fibre, including 64,000 route miles in
350 metropolitan areas, and 33,000 subsea route miles
connecting multiple continents. CenturyLink's on-net buildings
are expected to increase by nearly 75% to approximately
CenturyLink CEO Glen Post, who is set to lead the combined
company, said the "slight delay" is viewed by the company as
"manageable", and does not affect the company’s
"We are working to obtain the remaining approvals, including
the State of California, the Department of Justice, and the
Federal Communications Commission, and want to give the
regulators time to complete their review process."
CenturyLink CTO Aamir Hussain recently told
Capacity that the company had identified almost $1
billion worth of potential synergies from the merger, most of
it coming from operational costs around its network. Hussain
also said the deal will make CenturyLink "a worldwide player"
and "number two in the world in enterprise".
To read the full interview with Aamir Hussain, in which he
discusses how CenturyLink will merge its network with Level 3,
mergers and acquisitions,