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Alteva Hunting for ‘Selected Strategic Opportunities’ as It Fields Takeover Offer, Names New CEO

By Kelly Teal
August 26, 2014 - News

**Editor's Note: Click here to see which channel people were on the move in June and July.**

Alteva Inc. is looking for a company, or companies, to buy, but it may get snapped up before that happens.

On Monday, the UCaaS provider said that, as part of its overall, now-completed, restructuring process, it’s on the hunt for what it’s calling “selected strategic opportunities to supplement its organic growth potential via acquisition." Alteva also said it has started a $3 million share buyback plan.

Then, on Tuesday, private equity firm Jupiter Investment Co. made an $8-per-share, non-binding cash offer for Alteva. Jupiter also increased its stake in Alteva from 5.7 percent to 6.2 percent, and said its proposal represents a 51 percent premium over Alteva’s Aug. 25 closing price of $5.29. Jupiter wants to combine Alteva with another company it holds, Princeton Hosted Solutions.

Whether that deal will materialize remains unknown, and rests largely in the hands of Alteva’s new CEO, Brian J. Kelley.

To that point, Kelley this week was appointed official head of Alteva, even though he has served as interim CEO since last November. At the same time, he continues to work as CEO of Four Winds Advisors LLC, a company that specializes in turnarounds and restructuring. Before he founded Four Winds, Kelley was CEO of snom Technology Inc.

As CEO, Kelly is receiving an annual salary of $285,000, plus up to $50,000 in travel and incidentals expenses, and various benefits. Alteva assured the Securities and Exchange Commission in an Aug. 26 filing that Kelley no longer sits on any of the company’s board committees and has no “material interest in any transaction required to be disclosed."

Since taking on interim CEO duties in May, Kelley has spearheaded a reorganization to improve Alteva’s operating and financial performance. This week, the company said those efforts resulted in more than 47,000 users on its hosted platform at the end of the second quarter, and new partnerships with channel players including MicroCorp and WTG.

"I believe we are just starting to realize the growth potential in the VoIP and UCaaS markets and I am committed to capitalizing on these opportunities," Kelley said in a prepared statement. “We are also committed to ensuring that Alteva has the competitive structure, including critical mass, to compete at all levels in the enterprise client market. To augment our emphasis on organic growth, we will strive to leverage our infrastructure and to evaluate opportunities representing accretive profitability."

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