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Frontier boss glad city ‘embraced’ it


Two years ago, when Frontier Communications Corp. boss Maggie Wilderotter came to Fort Wayne, she promised customers “a new Frontier.”

Today, she feels the Stamford, Conn.-based company is still blazing a trail.

“Fort Wayne is our second-largest market and it is a strategic location,” Wilderotter said Tuesday in a brief interview with The Journal Gazette. “We have 1,600 employees here. It’s been a terrific surprise how they have embraced the Frontier way.”

Wilderotter, chairwoman and chief executive officer, was to rally the troops this morning during a meeting with workers at IPFW. Frontier entered the local market after acquiring landline phone, Internet and cable business from Verizon Communications Inc. in 14 states.

While critics may point to a few bumps along the way – such as a 30 percent increase to FiOS video customers and a testy ad campaign with competitor Comcast – Wilderotter says the company has come through unscathed. On Monday, Frontier will begin a promotion that gives subscribers of its “triple play” video, Internet and phone services a $450 gift card through Apple Inc.

“We’re teaming up with them,” Wilderotter said. “It’s an exciting offer. You can use the gift card toward an iPad or iPhone.”

The promotion is likely to run for a month, “but if the response is good it could be longer,” she said.

This isn’t the first time Frontier has attempted to attract customers with giveaways. In what some industry watchers called an effort to quiet complaints over higher pricing, last year Frontier began offering customers various bargains, including a 32-inch flat-screen television and DVD player, laptop computer and DVR service for a year.