Life After Alltel: Businesses Rise From Ashes

by Jamie Walden  on Monday, May. 4, 2009 12:00 am  

Kevin Halpin, left, and Mike Stafford are using the skills they gained at Alltel to launch their own company, the Customer Experience Group.

Fox’s other partners at Circumference are Frank O’Mara, former chief marketing officer at Alltel, and Chris Smith, Alltel’s former executive vice president of network services.

Other Circumference associates include Lisa Handly, former SVP of customer strategies for Alltel Wireless; Brian Taylor, Alltel’s VP of prepaid wireless strategy and operations; and Scott Moody, former VP of emerging growth strategy at Alltel.

Fox said that he and the cadre of ex-Alltel employees do not have non-compete clauses that would bar them from investing in the Alltel divestiture assets — the 105 cellular market areas and accompanying assets that Verizon must sell as part of the terms of the deal. Fox would not comment on any interest or lack thereof in the assets.

Another ex-Alltel exec has opened an investment firm with a slight twist.

C.J. Duvall, who was EVP of human resources, launched Mosley Investments LLC in April.

Duvall said he intends to model the firm after his three-year-old advisory firm, the Duvall Family Charitable Endowment, by choosing “symbiotic investments” that contribute to the community while still making a profit.

Duvall had income of almost $10 million in 2007 after the go-private buyout.

Joe Slayton, former president of Alltel’s wireless operations, started his own investment group called Slayton Enterprises LLC, which was incorporated in late 2008. Slayton Enterprises has already launched an operation of its own and purchased an existing business.

Slayton said his investment firm purchased the Green Leaf, a florist in Jonesboro, in March and started a cattle ranching operation north of Pocahontas.

Slayton said he is considering buying a couple of other companies, but played the rest of his hand close to the vest because, he said, Arkansas has become rife with investment activity, largely from investment groups formed by ex-Alltel execs.

They’ve Got Skills
Not all of the businesses rising from the ashes of Alltel are investment firms, however.

Kevin Halpin, former VP of process development, and Mike Stafford, VP of customer experience management, were among the first wave of Alltel execs to receive their walking papers on Jan. 9.



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