CenturyLink announced that it will acquire fiber networking company Level 3 Communications. When complete, the deal will result in CenturyLink becoming the second largest fiber network provider in the U.S., positioning the company well in its competition with AT&T and Verizon. Level 3 shareholders will receive $26.50 per share in cash, and about 1.5 shares of CenturyLink stock per Level 3 stock owned.

Glen Post will continue on as the new company’s CEO, with Sunit Patel remaining as CFO. “When (we) got together a few months ago, we talked about the industry and the possible benefits of bringing these companies together,” said Post during a press conference. “We took a hard look at synergies and said this is a transaction we have to consider.” An important element of the deal was the fact that CenturyLink would gain an additional 200K miles of fiber networking, with a large chunk already installed in more than 300 metro areas.

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