CHEYENNE, WY, March 29, 2000 ? Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q), the broadband Internet communications company and U S WEST, Inc. (NYSE: USW), a leading provider of next-generation broadband and communications services, announced today that the two companies have reached agreement with the Wyoming Consumer Advocate Staff (CAS) on key issues in the areas of service, prices and investment regarding the pending Qwest-U S WEST merger application.
The negotiated agreement includes provisions designed to demonstrate continued investment in the state's core telecommunications network and continued service improvement by the merged company. The agreement, if approved by the Wyoming Public Service Commission, would result in significantly enhanced telecommunications opportunities for Wyoming cities and towns. The investments would create a redundant, high-speed, digital network in Wyoming that would not only benefit economic development in the state, but help maintain voice and data services in the case of a cable cut.
"This agreement represents an important step toward approval of our merger with Qwest in Wyoming," said Michael Ceballos, U S WEST vice president - Wyoming. "It demonstrates our commitment to Wyoming, and continues the momentum for approval of the merger. Network infrastructure investments will continue in the state, leading to further service improvements for customers."
"I want to thank the Consumer Advocate Staff for helping us reach this important agreement which paves the way for a prompt approval in Wyoming," said Steve Davis, senior vice president of government affairs for Qwest. "The agreement is a clear indicator that the staff supports the conclusion reached by a growing number of federal and state regulators around the country: this merger is in the public interest and it should be approved without delay."
The merger has received all required federal approvals and awaits clearance from Arizona, Minnesota, Montana, Washington, Wyoming and Utah.
The combined company, to be named Qwest Communications International Inc., will create a communications powerhouse headquartered in Denver and employing about 64,000 people. U S WEST and Qwest will unite the nation's most innovative local, wireless and broadband communications firm with one of the world's most advanced fiber-optic networks and broadband Internet providers. Together, the two firms will have more than 3 million miles of deployed fiber in the U.S. and worldwide, 29 million customers and a network that is 99.2 percent digitally switched.
Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q) is a leader in reliable, scalable and secure broadband Internet-based data, voice and image communications for businesses and consumers. The Qwest Macro Capacity® Fiber Network, designed with the newest optical networking equipment for speed and efficiency, spans more than 25,500 miles in North America. In addition, KPNQwest (Nasdaq: KQIP), Qwest's European joint venture with KPN, the Dutch telecommunications company, is building and will operate a high-capacity European fiber optic, Internet-based network that will span 11,800 miles when it is completed in 2001. For more information, please visit the Qwest web site at www.qwest.com.
About U S WEST
U S WEST (NYSE: USW) is a leading broadband and communications service provider, with more than $13 billion in annual revenues. U S WEST leads the industry in deploying next-generation broadband ADSL and VDSL Internet access and data/video services; offers the nation's first and only 'one-number' advanced wireless service that integrates customers' home or business phones with their wireless PCS; and provides multimedia advertising services, including Internet & print directories. The company has nearly 2 million miles of deployed fiber in the U.S., provides local exchange services to more than 25 million customers in 14 states, and provides wireless services to more than 500,000 customers and data services to more than 800,000 customers nationally.
For more information about U S WEST, go to http://www.uswest.com.
This release may contain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. These statements may differ materially from actual future events or results. Readers are referred to the documents filed by Qwest and U S WEST with the SEC, specifically the most recent reports which identify important risk factors that could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, including potential fluctuations in quarterly results, dependence on new product development, rapid technological and market change, failure to maintain rights of way, financial risk management and future growth subject to risks, Qwest's ability to achieve Year 2000 compliance, and adverse changes in the regulatory or legislative environment. This release may include analysts' estimates and other information prepared by third parties, for which neither Qwest nor U S WEST assumes any responsibility. Qwest and U S WEST undertake no obligation to review or confirm analysts' expectations or estimates or to release publicly any revisions to any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.
The Qwest logo is a registered trademark of Qwest Communications International Inc. in the U.S. and certain other countries.
|Qwest Media Contact
|Qwest Media Contact