Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Verizon sells phone businesses in three NE states: Ohio next?

The New York Times reports that Verizon Communications has sold its telephone business in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont. From the article:
The company has indicated that it may also divest local phone operations in more rural parts of the Midwest, though it was unclear whether any deals were in the works.
Back on May 10, Dionne Searcey and Dennis Berman reported in the Wall Street Journal (not on line) that:
Verizon Communications Inc. is fielding offers for two big packages of traditional telephone lines that could have a combined value of up to $8 billion, say people familiar with the matter. The possible sales are part of the New York-based phone giant's strategy to delve deeper into the wireless and broadband arenas, while getting out of the traditional phone business in U.S. areas that aren't slated for fiber upgrades -- which allow the company to sell more Internet-based services -- and therefore are less valuable to the company in the long run... Verizon also has been shopping a package dubbed "GTE North" that comprises about 3.4 million access lines in former GTE Corp. territories in Indiana, Illinois, Ohio and Michigan. [emphasis added]
Here's a PUCO map of Verizon's "GTE North" service territory in Ohio. Over 800,000 households in this territory were served by GTE when it merged with Bell Atlantic in 2000 to form Verizon. The company has been notoriously slow to roll out DSL to many of these households -- not just in its large rural service areas, but in cities like Oberlin as well.

Up for sale? Not "slated for fiber upgrades"? The new Governor (who represented a lot of this territory in Congress) might want to look into Verizon's intentions for high-speed service in Ohio.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yeah I have a comment: WHERE THE HELL is my DSL?.... Verizon!

Between Genoa and Martin OH.