Yesterday PAETEC (news, filings) voted as scheduled on the proposed merger with Windstream (NYSE:WIN, news, filings). Despite the expectation by some that another bidder emerge and upset the apple cart, the result was a straightforward approval of the deal by 99% of shares voting, representing 81% of the total outstanding.
The idea that Level 3 was going to make a higher rival bid was always more of a theoretical exercise than an actual rumor. On paper you could make a compelling case, which is what FBR did. But in practice, I never saw it as move that Level 3 might reasonably make. Actually, Windstream's timing for this move was quite fortuitous, as I think they would have faced a more crowded process if they had initiated it six months in either direction.
The deal isn't done yet of course, the two expect to complete it by the end of the year. Honestly, I think it will probably be done by the end of November, but you never can tell with regulators I guess. Not that there's any chance regulators will torpedo the deal. After all, when complete we will have a major ILEC competing as a CLEC outside its own footprint against the other ILECs in nearly all major markets nationally - thirty years after Ma Bell was partitioned on geographic lines that nobody ever seemed to cross properly.
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