Even though it came as no surprise, the Frontier chapter 11 bankruptcy filing disrupted the channel.

Craig Galbraith, Editorial Director

May 15, 2020

10 Slides

After months of speculation, the Frontier Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing last month didn’t come as a huge surprise to most. But it rocked the channel nonetheless.

In some ways, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, many partners are thriving by jumping on the unified communications wave. Meantime, big-name suppliers and distributors are stepping up to help those who are not faring so well.

But it’s some of those same big names which have piled up debt or gotten themselves into other types of dire financial straits, leading them down the road to bankruptcy. The Frontier Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing joins similar moves by Windstream, Sungard Availability Services, Fusion Connect and other big channel players — in just the past year.

It’s probably too early to predict exactly how the filing will impact the company’s channel program. However, Adam Edwards, CEO of master agent Telarus, told us last month he’s confident that Frontier will honor commissions and that “the channel is a priority.”

Frontier formally filed its restructuring plan with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York on Friday, Bloomberg Law reported.

Plagued by more than just financial issues, Frontier might have an uphill battle winning over both business customers and its residential consumers. For instance, the Better Business Bureau gave the company an “F,” citing a one-star average customer rating. And a professor at the University of Wisconsin told The Badger Project that “Frontier’s Wisconsin customers can expect a continuation of poor service, foregone plant maintenance, and lack of planning for future rural broadband expansion.” That was after it filed for bankruptcy protection. Ouch.

In the gallery below, we’ve compiled a timeline of events, beginning last December, which outline how the Frontier Chapter 11 bankruptcy unfolded. Stay tuned to Channel Partners for continuing coverage of the company’s recovery.

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About the Author(s)

Craig Galbraith

Editorial Director, Channel Futures

Craig Galbraith is the editorial director for Channel Futures, joining the team in 2008. Before that, he spent more than 11 years as an anchor, reporter and managing editor in television newsrooms in North Dakota and Washington state. Craig is a proud Husky, having graduated from the University of Washington. He makes his home in the Phoenix area.

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