Denver, July 23, 2001 ? Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q), today filed for arbitration seeking damages from Citizens Communications Company for breaching its obligations relating to the purchase of telephone access lines and related properties from Qwest. The company said Citizens repeatedly postponed the closing for no legitimate reasons.
In June 1999, U S WEST entered into agreements to sell approximately 540,000 access lines in nine states for $1.65 billion. Qwest acquired U S WEST on June 30, 2000.
In a news release today, Citizens attempted to explain its failure to close the transaction by claiming that there was an unexpected discrepancy between estimated revenue Citizens expected to receive from the telephone exchanges in the transactions, and the revenue U S WEST had been receiving from those exchanges prior to signing the purchase agreements.
Qwest asserts Citizens? statements are false. Citizens is a sophisticated buyer who had a complete understanding of the revenues even before they signed the agreements more than two years ago. Qwest said revenues from the telephone exchanges to be sold have actually increased over the last four years.
?It is unfortunate that our discussions have come to this point. We had hoped to resolve our issues with Citizens in a reasonable manner,? said Augie Cruciotti, Qwest executive vice president of local networks. ?However, we welcome the opportunity to continue providing excellent service to the customers who will remain with us.?
Qwest service throughout the 14 Western states where it provides local services has improved since it acquired U S WEST last year, reaching the highest levels of performance in five to seven years in key areas for consumer and small business customers.
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 113,000 miles globally. For more information, please visit the Qwest web site at www.qwest.com.
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