Settlement Information


BURLINGTON TELECOM SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT AND PSB APPROVAL

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Has Burlington Telecom been sold?

The agreement between the City of Burlington and Citibank utilizes financing provided by Blue Water Holdings LLC (“Blue Water”), an entity formed by local businessman Trey Pecor with the backing of Merchants Bank. In this transaction approved by the Public Service Board, Blue Water has purchased equipment from Citibank and other assets of Burlington Telecom, and leased all assets back to the City in a structure similar to the original Citibank lease. The City continues to control and operate BT, while evaluating opportunities for long term purchasers or partners. The City’s focus is on continuing to grow BT.

The Blue Water Agreement leaves the City with the choice of who will eventually buy BT, subject to a financial threshold. This critical provision gives the City four years to find a purchaser or partner with a vision for BT that is aligned with the City’s and one which will continue to provide a positive community and economic development impact. The more the local community supports BT by using its services, the better the outcome.

Will this affect my service?

Absolutely not. BT will continue to operate as usual with no change to your service..

Do I need to find a new Internet/phone/cable provider?

BT is here to stay. We will continue to provide all of the services customers expect and rely upon.

How long will the City of Burlington own BT?

The refinancing gives the City four years to select a buyer or partner for BT. Many of the transactions envisioned contemplate the City continuing to hold a long term interest in BT.

Can BT be owned by the Keep It Local Co-op?

Yes, if the co-operative secures the appropriate financing commitments, it can be considered along with other potential buyers or partners.

Will the $16.9 million be paid back?

The settlement of the Citibank lawsuit and the Blue Water financing provide the best opportunity for the City to recover some of the $16.9 million. When BT is sold, the City will receive the following percent of net sale proceeds (after payment to Blue Water of the unamortized balance of $6 million and other deal costs and deductions and a split with Citibank):

  • 25% within 0 to 3 years
  • 17.5% within 3 to 4 years
  • 12.5% within 4 to 5 years
  • 5% after year 5.

BURLINGTON TELECOM REINTRODUCES ITSELF TO COMMUNITY

BT’s new day includes Internet speeds up to 100x faster than nation’s basic broadband,
highest customer satisfaction in industry

BT unveils new logo, launches improved website, continues work toward unbeatable customer service

BURLINGTON, VT — Mayor Miro Weinberger and Burlington Telecom General Manager Stephen Barraclough today reintroduced BT to the Burlington community, highlighting: BT’s ability to offer up to 1 Gigabit (1,000 MB) of Internet speed to its customers, a speed that is 100 times faster than the nation’s basic broadband speeds; and BT’s industry-leading customer satisfaction survey results.  BT also unveiled its new logo, launched a new and improved website, and renewed its commitment to unbeatable customer service.

“With the cloud of litigation gone for good, BT saved from destruction, and taxpayers protected from further harm, we can focus on realizing the full economic and community development potential of BT,” said Mayor Weinberger.  “I hope Burlington residents and businesses who understandably steered clear of BT during its precarious years now will take a fresh look at BT and the enormous bandwidth and outstanding customer service it offers.”

BT is capitalizing on its new financial stability following the Settlement Agreement with Citibank and its unique position as Burlington’s only 100% fiber-optic network to continue its work toward becoming an ever-more-important economic and community asset to Burlington’s businesses and residents.  In addition to the reliability and unmatched speed that BT’s fiber-optics provide, BT also has received Burlington’s highest customer satisfaction ranking in the Internet Service Provider (ISP) industry. Despite 2014 American Consumer Satisfaction Index results showing that  only 65% of consumers are satisfied with their ISP service, representing the lowest satisfaction of any industry in the United States, BT customers indicate much greater satisfaction. In April 2014, BT performed market research including a statistically significant survey sample of 603 Burlington residents. The survey results showed that 88% of BT customers were either very satisfied or satisfied with their service, while less than half that percentage (43%) of non-BT customers ranked their satisfaction with their ISP company as very satisfied or satisfied.

Continuing its focus on ensuring a superior customer experience, BT has launched a redesigned website and a new logo, creating a fresh perspective on its visual identity. The new website is focused on ease of use through more simple navigation for current customers, and a clearer understanding of products offered for those looking for an Internet, cable, and telephone provider.

“With the completion of the Settlement Agreement, we are able to continue focusing on creating a product and customer experience that cannot be equaled,” stated GM Barraclough. “This experience starts with an easy-to-navigate website, the first touch point for current and potential customers to learn about the excellent services BT provides.”

Until now, BT had used its name to create a presence without a logo as an asset. Designed in-house and in conjunction with the website, the new BT logo reflects the strength and speed of BT’s superior fiber network.

To interact with the new website, please visit www.burlingtontelecom.net/.

To learn more about the Settlement Agreement, find the ruling and BT FAQs at http://burlingtontelecom.net/About-Us/Settlement-Agreement.

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