Shakeup at Level 3?

August 3rd, 2010 by · 12 Comments

According to Phone+, Level 3 Communications (NYSE:LVLT, news, filings) has realigned its North American sales leadership.  Rather than operating North America in three groups: wholesale, content, and business, there will now be a single sales organization with six channels:  large enterprise, wholesale, federal, content, mid-market and indirect.  Jeff Tench, who was head of the business markets group, appears to be out of the picture.  A quick look at Level 3's management page says that isn't the only change. 

First of all, CMO Sureel Choski is no longer in evidence and uncomfirmed rumors have him no longer with the company.  Choski had been around in various executive roles forever, including a stint as CFO.  Peter Neill, who was head of content markets, is now SVP of Business Process Engineering - a rather different job title I would say.  No doubt there are other organizational changes in the tier below this that have affected many others.  Good luck to those adversely affected.  Anyone know further details?

A shakeup in Level 3's organization isn't all that shocking though, the past few years have been very challenging (to say the least!) yet the top management team didn't change much at all.  Yet the previous realignment into four customer facing groups didn't accomplish its aims.  They need to make something happen, revenues simply must show real growth in the second half and beyond.  Will this do it?  Who knows...  Some will no doubt refer to this as a further rearranging of the deck chairs on the Titanic - there has been no shortage of such reorganizations at Level 3 over the years.  We'll just have to wait and see.

Tench was one of the primary movers behind the local markets initiative, which seems to have helped the mid-market group regain its footing.  That voluntary decentralization of power did seem to decrease the need for a centralized BMG organization.  I wonder where he will show up next, I'll bet it won't take very long.

I wonder if the company will now give us details on the six channels rather than the four we get now.  Probably not, though it would be rather interesting to get numbers for the indirect and federal channels.

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12 Comments So Far


  • carlk says:

    On Q1’s CC, Charles Miller was added to the managerial lineup in atypical fashion to discuss imminent consolidation surrounding MNA, in one form or another.

    Without a doubt, he left share owners confident that (3) would not be left out in what would be transpiring.

    This seems to point in that direction. For many owners, whatever mix and matches occur, it couldn’t come soon enough tied to so many dead telecom men walking.

    In memory of James Q. Crowe sellin Colorado mansions, “Bring it on!”

  • Dave Rusin says:

    In need of a CSO — Chief Slim Officer aka the Jenny Craig Plan …

  • carlk says:

    Well then DR., I must ask you while understanding that many times you might not be as humble as some others-not that one is better or worse than the other when factoring for share owner ROI’s with respect to measuring necessary RESULTS- although certainly, you might be considered more of a telecom maven than this man walking off of the plane but, who would be a better CSO for (3) owners, you, or this other guy from the wrong side of the tracks? 🙂

    If it were you, however, please don’t buy his mansion because it’s so garish, especially considering the lack of RESULTS he has been spearheading over at (3).

    http://money.cnn.com/2010/07/29/news/companies/buffets_mr_fixit_full.fortune/

  • Telecom Mike says:

    Is an organization change at Level 3 really even news worthy anymore? They seem as regular as their quarterly filings. These constant reorganizations are part of the reason that they have continuity problems with their customers.

  • carlk says:

    Oh yeah, and remember that one of (3)’s recent, more legitimate selling director’s, John Reed, is aptly called a “financial expert” in other (3) filings. The only other legit selling director, i.e., not related to withholding taxes, was Fairfax Financial’s board rep, Doug Eby.

    Robert, do you play the violin, or are you better at arranging the deck chairs?

  • CroweLovesTOFU says:

    This is no shakeUP, it is a shakeOUT! Choski is OUT! Tench, OUT! Jeff Allen, OUT! With Andrew Crouch running sales of Wholesale AND BMG, expect the expected as the water rises. Crowe is a modern day Nosferatu sacrificing the young to stay alive. This COULD make a better tragepic than Titanic. I’m picturing Abe Vigoda playing Crowe. Former Senator John Edwards playing O’Hara.

  • carlk says:

    Let’s ask Dave, or DR., what the hell he thinks, again!

    http://www.telecomstraightshooter.com/2010/08/03/stop-the-dancing-part-1/

  • Anonymous says:

    a serious question, Buddy Miller is accountable for M& A and due diligence. What value has teh 7 M&A added to Level 3 and when is he held accountable and join the ranks of teh unemployed. Seems he gets a free ride despite questionable M&A that have added no value that can be seen today,

  • Muhammad says:

    In the Telecom Industry Level 3 have good value, because some of poor companies given level 2 to dummies.

  • carlk says:

    Ah yes, those lying, criminal, manipulating, dictating Wall Streeter’s who sit on Level 2 quoting machines making the “BID” for all to see!

    Muhammad, please pray to Allah that he strengthens you with your sword to chop off their HEADS! 🙂

  • carlk says:

    It’s awfully odd that so many young, seemingly talented Generation X’rs in important managerial positions were removed from the company’s website without an official PR from the enterprise as to where they went.

    Where’s Ike Elliott when you need him!

    Robert, inquiring minds are in pursuit of more light surrounding this matter.

    What additional color inside the spectrum are you seeing or hearing? thx

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