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Windstream Rival Tries to Poach Partners

DigitalPhone.io hopes to attract Windstream partners that are being cut from its partner program as part of its chapter 11 bankruptcy process.

Last week, Windstream announced it is cutting 15 percent of its partners while increasing commissions for the remaining partners for selling strategic products. Curt Allen, Windstream Enterprise’s president of strategic channels, said the partners being cut “haven’t sold anything in years.”

In a press release this week, DigitalPhone.io said these partners will “immediately see their commissions stop, regardless of how it negatively impacts their operations, cash flow projections, or reputations.” DigitalPhone.io also made the announcement via Twitter and Facebook.

“Apparently, Windstream has other items on the agenda at the moment than supporting channel partners who have been driving revenues and customers to the telecommunications company for years,” it said. “According to some current and ex-employees posting at TheLayoffs.com, one of these priorities is carrying out a ‘stealth layoff program’ that involves handing out a small number of pink slips over a long period of time, in order to avoid a public relations blowback. Join the DigitalPhone.io team!”

We couldn’t independently verify the claim, but Windstream said it has no comment.

Ovum's Mike Sapien

Ovum’s Mike Sapien

Mike Sapien, Ovum’s vice president and chief analyst of enterprise services, said what Greensboro, North Carolina-based DigitalPhone.io is doing is “very common practice,” although it’s not common to make these campaigns public. He pointed out that Windstream last week was granted a temporary restraining order barring Charter Communications from distributing an advertisement suggesting Windstream customers could lose service because of its chapter 11 bankruptcy.

“Usually these are field campaigns and not announced publicly,” he said. “Windstream will make [it] through bankruptcy but [will] be hit with many local campaigns towards their customers and partners. Few customers and partners will be impacted.”

DigitalPhone.io says it’s a “fast-growing and highly respected VoIP solutions provider with a national footprint, and we have been providing exceptional ‘carrier neutral’ service for more than 15 years. Our platform is feature rich and unobscured by complicated pricing.”


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