New York, Others, OK CenturyLink-Level 3

The state of New York, joined by Pennsylvania, Colorado and Alaska, are the latest states to approve the proposed merger of CenturyLink and Level 3, according to CenturyLink.

The total of states approving the deal has topped 20 as the FCC continues its review. The deal was filed with the Feds back in December.

The merger, which would boost CenturyLink’s enterprise and wholesale broadband business data services, was announced Oct. 31 and applications filed with the FCC and for antitrust review by the Department of Justice in December.

The merger is valued at $34 billion including debt.

Back in April, as the FCC prepared to vote on deregulating the businesses data services (BDS) market, the Wireline Competition Bureau asked for more information from ILEC CenturyLink and merger partner Level 3 on how their merger would affect competition for business services.

Along with the AT&T-Time Warner merger, it will be one of the first big media mergers to be vetted primarily under the Trump Administration. Trump has talked about reducing regs but also about blocking consolidation among media outlets.

CenturyLink said it still expects to secure all federal (FCC and Justice) and state approvals to allow the deal to close by the end of the third quarter (Sept. 30).

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.