XO CEO to Depart

Daniel F. Akerson, chairman and CEO of XO Communications , is resigning after three years with the network operator to “pursue other business interests and spend more time with his family.”

His departure is expected next month when the Reston, Va., company’s bankruptcy reorganization plan takes effect (pending final regulatory approval). Akerson will continue to serve as a consultant to XO. Terms of that contract have not been finalized.

“I can’t begin to tell you how pleased I am about how the XO management team pulled together throughout the restructuring process over the last year,” Akerson said in a statement issued this morning.

His next career move was not announced.

XO spokeswoman Kara Palamaras told internetnews.com that a search for Akerson’s successor is underway. In the interim, president and COO Nate Davis, XO’s president and COO will oversee daily operations.

Akerson arrived during the telecommunications boom: startups went public weekly (regardless of whether they had products or profits); vast fiber-optic systems were constructed worldwide; and predictions for voice and data traffic rose exponentially with each new industry report.

Reality, in the form of an economic recession, set in about 18 months later. Carriers, who took loans to build out their infrastructure, suddenly found themselves unable to pay. Many, including XO, were forced to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

XO, which provides local and long distance voice, Internet access, Virtual Private Networking (VPN), Ethernet, Web Hosting and other services in 60 markets, said entities controlled by financier Carl Icahn will hold a majority stake in the company after the restructuring.

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