The Two Sides of Verizon's Deal Making

Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) boss Ivan Seidenberg may be one of the best deal makers of his time, or one of the worst.

Today, three of Verizon’s most significant divestitures are either in bankruptcy or near it. As they say on Wall Street, it all depends on what side of the trade you’re on.

Verizon’s former yellow-pages unit, which goes by the ungainly name of Idearc, sought court refuge from creditors in May; Verizon’s former Hawaiian telecom franchise, purchased by Carlyle Group, filed for bankruptcy in December, and FairPoint Communications, which absorbed landlines from Verizon in a complicated divestment, is close to going under, the company said in a July securities filing. In all, these companies have lost upward of $13 billion in value and counting.

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