Internet provider Wave Broadband will continue to operate under its own brand name and keep its Kirkland headquarters after the acquisition. But CEO Steve Weed will step down from that position, taking a seat on the board of directors of the combined entity.
Kirkland-based internet provider Wave Broadband will be bought by San Francisco private equity company TPG Capital in a deal worth $2.36 billion.
Wave will join with RCN Telecom Services, which TPG already owns, to form a cable and internet service provider that spans large parts of the nation.
Wave has been growing rapidly in the last several years. The company has reeled in more than $1 billion from investors and expanded its fiber broadband network up and down the West Coast. Last month, Wave announced it had bought its 22nd company.
Wave will continue to operate under its own brand name and keep its Kirkland headquarters after the acquisition. But Chief Executive Steve Weed will step down from that position, taking a seat on the board of directors of the combined entity.
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RCN chief Jim Holanda will run the combined companies from offices in Princeton, N.J.
He will oversee what TPG says is the sixth-largest internet and cable provider in the U.S., with a presence in many of the largest cable markets. TPG bought RCN — whose network serves Northeast markets, including New York City and Boston, as well as Chicago — and fellow telecom company Grande, which operates in Texas, in August 2016.
Wave has about 1,400 employees on the West Coast, about 400 of them in Kirkland. They include business salespeople, engineers, and network and customer-support specialists.
Asked about the potential for layoffs as Wave loses some of the functions of an independent company, Weed said Wave plans to keep expanding in Kirkland and throughout its West Coast markets.
“We’re going to have a single CEO and operate Wave as a division headquartered here,” he said. “It’s a local focus, and decentralized from a network standpoint.”
The aim down the line is for the companies to be able to sell to corporate clients that have offices spread across the companies’ markets.
The deal is expected to close by the end of the year.
Private equity firm Oak Hill, formerly Wave’s majority owner, and investor GI Partners will sell their stakes to TPG as part of the deal. Weed said he and Wave’s management will remain invested in the new entity.