- CenturyLink announced Monday plans to acquire Level 3 Communications for approximately $34 billion in cash and stock, and the assumption of about $7 billion in debt.
- In a deal that creates the second largest domestic communications provider, CenturyLink shareholders will retain about 51% of the company while Level 3 shareholders will hold 49% of the new company, according to the announcement.
- The two companies expect the deal to close in the third quarter of 2017, following both regulatory and shareholder approvals.
The rumors are true: The two companies announced the deal after reports surfaced last week that a major merger was under way that creates a company worth about $50 billion. CenturyLink brings its enterprise customer base to the deal, while Level 3 has a larger global reach, with capabilities in more than 60 countries.
Telecom companies have worked to offer customers better and faster networking capabilities, which requires the adoption of new technology such as fiber. With the acquisition, CenturyLink's fiber network increases by 200,000 route miles, with 64,000 of those miles in 350 metro areas, according to the announcement. Another 33,000 of those route miles are from underwater fiber cables.
The deal also creates a much larger enterprise provider, and business customers will represent about 76% of the combined company's revenue.