CenturyLink, Qwest Clinch Another States Approval For Giant Merger

Iowas utilities regulators have given the thumbs-up to the pending merger of CenturyLink Inc. and Qwest Communications International Inc.

Iowa joins 11 other states, plus the District of Columbia, in consenting to the merger. Whats different is that its the first state where both Qwest and CenturyLink operate, to give its approval of the $22.4 billion deal. The transaction should close early next year and includes $11.8 billion of Qwest debt.

CenturyLink and Qwest already have reached agreements with several Iowa CLECs on retail and wholesale pricing and access. Plus, the companies say that, once combined, theyll spend at least $25 million on broadband deployments in Iowa over the next five years.

Qwest and CenturyLink still need blessings from nine more states and the FCC. The U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission have signed off on the merger.

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