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What Does Frontier Bankruptcy Mean For WNC?

Courtesy of North Carolina Broadband Infrastructure Office
The areas of North Carolina mapped in green have download speeds greater than or equal to 25 mbps and upload speeds of 3 mbps.

Reports say that Frontier Communications will declare bankruptcy this week. Here's what that could mean for Western North Carolina: 

Frontier is one of the largest broadband providers in the region. Beyond that Frontier provides telecom services across 29 states. That’s why news that the company might file for bankruptcy is turning a lot of heads. 

Wes King is director of communications for the North Carolina Broadband Infrastructure office. 

“Whenever we hear that a large internet service provider is filing for bankruptcy - and we know that they serve a substantial portion of North Carolina citizens - that is something that is very important to us and that we are keeping a very close eye on,” says King.  

King says that since the filing has not yet taken place so there isn’t any information on if this could stop service or how Frontier might restructure. 

Bloomberg reports this bankruptcy would be one of the biggest telecom reorganizations in the last 20 years.  

Let’s look at another recent example of a telecom company restructuring. Windstream, an Arkansas-based company which serves just over 1 million customers hasn’t had to turn off any services while filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.  The company is still planning it’s restructuring but in the meantime has purchased additional 5G capabilities. 

Frontier spokesperson Javier Mendoza says customers shouldn’t be worried. In a statement sent via email, Mendoza says:  

“Frontier’s business and operations are solid and serving our customers remains our top priority. As we have said publicly, Frontier is evaluating its capital structure with an eye to reducing debt and interest expense so as to be able to better serve our customers. Our customers should expect no changes as we remain focused on providing quality communications services.”

Want to learn more about broadband service in North Carolina? Here's a link to the map pictured above.