Lingo® Announces New Capitalization Led by B. Riley and Appoints New Leadership
Closes acquisition of LingoKY and Tempo Telecom;
Names Vincent M. Oddo as President and CEO and Bill Morris as CFO;
Debt refinancing sponsored by B. Riley
ATLANTA, GA – December 17, 2020 – Lingo Management, LLC (“Lingo” or the “Company”), a leading global Cloud/UC and managed service provider, today announced several significant developments that support the acceleration of Lingo’s strategy in the Business and Carrier Markets.
On November 30, 2020, the Company closed the acquisition of Lingo of Kentucky, LLC (“LingoKY”) and Tempo Telecom, LLC (“Tempo”). Effective immediately, Vincent M. Oddo will serve as Lingo’s President & Chief Executive Officer; and Bill Morris will serve as Lingo’s Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Oddo most recently served as Executive Chairman of Lingo, and Mr. Morris previously served as CFO of both LingoKY and Tempo
Lingo also announced a transformative recapitalization transaction sponsored by B. Riley Principal Investments, LLC (“B. Riley”), a subsidiary of diversified financial services company B. Riley Financial, Inc. (NASDAQ: RILY). This new capitalization will strengthen Lingo’s balance sheet while also providing additional financial and operational expertise with new ownership from B. Riley.
“The combined acquisition, leadership change and new capitalization enhance our presence as a global communications, Cloud/UC and managed services provider focused on serving Business and Carrier customers located in all 50 states, Canada and around the globe,” said Vincent M. Oddo, CEO of Lingo. “We are building on our heritage of redefining the way businesses are served and supported, and Lingo is well-positioned to meet the accelerating demand for Cloud/UC and managed services – competitively, strategically and financially.”
Through the recapitalization, Lingo has restructured and refinanced its existing debt of approximately $64 million, a portion of which was converted into 40% equity ownership held by B. Riley. The first tranche of the transaction closed on November 30, 2020. The second tranche, under which B. Riley can acquire an additional 40% ownership stake, is expected to close in 2021, subject to receiving customary regulatory approvals. As part of the transaction, Lingo has also granted B. Riley representation on its Board.
“These transactions strengthen Lingo’s financial footing and our ability to deliver a comprehensive set of communications and managed-service capabilities which enables our customers to operate their businesses in an efficient and effective manner,” said Bill Morris, CFO of Lingo. “Superior, award-winning customer service remains our number-one priority. We are excited to welcome the new LingoKY and Tempo customers and employees and look forward to working closely with B. Riley as we continue to execute our strategy.”
“We are pleased to serve as a strategic partner and financial sponsor to Lingo on its debt restructuring,” said Ananth Veluppillai, Chief Operating Officer of B. Riley Principal Investments (a B. Riley Financial company). “The combination of Lingo’s network and subscriber base and our operational expertise to generate significant cash flows make this an attractive investment for B. Riley. We look forward to working closely with the Lingo management team to replicate the success we’ve had with our other telecom and Cloud vertical principal investments.”
With new leadership and a strengthened balance sheet, Lingo believes it is well-positioned to aggressively execute on its mission to serve business and carrier customers at every stage of their business lifecycle through its world-class network – from startup, to all sectors of the small- and medium-sized business (SMB) marketplace – domestic or international.
Lingo’s recently completed acquisition of LingoKY and Tempo creates a nationwide communications, Cloud/UC and managed services provider with approximately 140,000 business and carrier customers located in all 50 states, Canada and around the globe. The acquisition also adds dark fiber, lit fiber and wireless products and services to the Lingo product portfolio.
Lingo is a leading global Cloud/UC and managed service provider to the SMB, Carrier and Consumer markets. Lingo provides modern, efficient, IP-based voice, data and managed services to customers around the globe. Lingo has an expansive IP-based network, experienced leadership and support staff with exceptional 24/7/365 customer care.
VP Sales & Marketing