Windstream Leaves Channel ‘Checkered History’ Far Behind with Bankruptcy Exit



… that’s all gone, Levine said.

“I get that the channel can have long memories,” he said. “But we’re going to earn our stripes with the channel on every single opportunity. We’re going to show them our value.”

Going Private a Plus

Going private will be a big benefit going forward, Levine said.

“The folks who now own our company are long-term growth investors,” he said. “They bought into the value and they believe in the value of what we can do on the Windstream Enterprise transformation from legacy TDM and basically being a traditional CLEC to more of a managed services powerhouse that’s underpinned with our own network assets, but also underpinned with our ability to aggregate other network resources on behalf of the customer.”

Windstream did see a drop in new customer business during the bankruptcy process. But Levine expects to now see an increase in new clients and new partners.

The resolution of the legal challenges, restructuring and funding are all a plus for Windstream and its partners, Omdia’s Whelan said. It now has much more flexibility in planning for the future.

Omdia's Cindy Whelan

Omdia’s Cindy Whelan

“I don’t think Monday’s developments substantially change Windstream’s position in the market,” she said. “But the exit does eliminate the ability of competitors and customers to question the company’s future, which will help partners working with prospective customers.”

Through the bankruptcy, Windstream has maintained a business-as-usual practice, Whelan said. That included keeping its focus on the channel, improving portal tools and working with partners through COVID-19 challenges.

PlanetOne's Ted Schuman

PlanetOne’s Ted Schuman

“I expect this pace to continue,” she said.

Ted Schuman is founder and CEO of master agent PlanetOne.

“PlanetOne has worked with Windstream for the better part of two decades and was one of their top three master agents for many years in a row,” Schuman said. “The channel rewards highly competitive, profitable and innovative providers in the networking space. Channel partners will see a renewed energy and continued enthusiasm for their success from Windstream. This was a heavy lift for Tony [Thomas] and the team at Windstream, and we’re ready to support their growth.”

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  1. Avatar Anon September 28, 2020 @ 9:52 am

    I think you meant to say that Windstream hopes to put its bankruptcy behind it in the eyes of channel partners. Their “financial cloud” caused tremendous disruption to partner operations and the competitive landscape.

  2. Avatar September 30, 2020 @ 7:06 am

    Let’s take what Ted said, “The channel rewards highly competitive, profitable and innovative providers in the networking space.” WIND used to be an aggressive pricer, which is how it got into financial trouble in the first place. Partners sold WIND on price, not value. Service delivery was always an issue. Pretty arrogant to not apologize for screwing partners for the better part of 3 years but expect partners to go back to business with them – especially when the same execs that sunk the company are still in place.

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