Level 3 Communications (NYSE:LVLT, news, filings) wasted little time picking a successor to James Crowe, who announced his intention to leave the company by the end of 2013 just last month. Today the company named Jeff Storey as both CEO and President effective immediately, elevating him from his previous role as COO and President. He now takes over responsibility for proving the company’s growth model going forward.
Crowe had led Level 3 since its creation back in the dot-com boom, through the telecom nuclear winter, and on to the consolidation of much of the country’s alternative fiber under one roof. The industry is a vastly different place than it was 15 years ago, and Level 3 is a much larger company that faces entirely different challenges than it did just a few years back.
Jeff Storey takes the helm at a moment when sustainable positive free cash flow is at hand, the debt load is manageable, and positive earnings per share are within sight (though not here just yet!) It will be interesting to see where he takes the company from here. Perhaps the first question will be who takes over as COO. Hmm….
Storey has also been nominated to the board of directors, while Crowe will not stand for re-election. That begs the question, what will James Q. Crowe do next? He will surely resurface somewhere before long. FCC Chairman perhaps? Haha, just kidding AT&T… mostly.
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