Windstream To Cut Big Chunk of Iowa Telecom Jobs

Windstream Corp.s recent takeover of Iowa Telecom has come with a price.

More than 200 people in Iowa and Minnesota will lose their jobs as Windstream moves the Iowa Telecom properties onto its own networking and billing platforms. A Windstream spokesman told that jobs in that state will not be affected.

All told, 220 positions mainly in finance, network operations and information technology will be eliminated, including 146 in Newton, Iowa, where Iowa Telecom was headquartered. Most of the jobs will be axed by years end; the remainder will be phased out, Windstream said, by early 2011. People impacted by the restructuring will be allowed to apply for other jobs within Windstream. Therell also be severance pay and outplacement help for eligible employees.

Windstream closed its $1.2 billion purchase of Iowa Telecom in June. The deal gave Windstream thousands more wireline, digital TV and broadband customers, and some valuable wireless spectrum, to boot. The Iowa Telecom buy, made public in November 2009, marked Windstreams fourth acquisition last year.

Shares of Windstream were trading .08 percent higher, reaching $12.29, by 2:04 p.m. ET.

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