Yesterday rumors emerged that XO’s CTO Randy Nicklas had left the company, and indeed his picture disappeared from the company website’s management team. But it was clearly voluntary, as Nicklas has already resurfaced over at Windstream (NYSE:WIN, news, filings).
Nicklas has been named EVP of Engineering and CTO of Windstream, where he will take over responsibility for network planning and engineering, outside plant, records, and capital management. At XO he was pushing those 100G upgrades, perhaps we’ll see something similar soon at Windstream – although their intercity fiber is less comprehensive.
Windstream’s team has been in flux lately in the wake of further integration of the PAETEC business, but it seems to be settling down now. Indications lately are that there have been continued shakeups over at XO, however, some of it voluntary and some involuntary — although verifiable details have been few and far between since Icahn took the company private.
I’d say the turnover at XO is an indicator of Icahn’s plans to sell the company, but I’d be crying wolf again given my historical opinion of what Icahn *ought* to do. And I haven’t actually heard that he’s shopping the assets yet. I still think he’s the wrong owner for this business, and his refusal to accept that has done a lot of damage.
I don’t think the bids he could get now are any higher than they were a couple years ago, and very well might be lower. But the list of potential buyers remains the same. And actually, Windstream is near the top of that list. Hmmm…