DENVER, August 21, 1997 -- Qwest Communications International Inc. (NASDAQ: QWST) today announced that it will extend its new high capacity fiber network to 14 major cities in Mexico.
In an agreement with Bestel, S.A. de C.V., Bestel will acquire Qwest?s Mexican subsidiary, SP Servicios, which owns conduit, railroad rights of way and other assets in Mexico. In return, Qwest will receive four dark fibers in a network Bestel is constructing parallel to Mexico?s railway system.
Qwest will connect the 13,000-mile fiber optic network it is building in the U.S. to the new Mexican network at Nuevo Laredo, across the border from Laredo, TX, extending service to 14 Mexican cities including Monterrey, Guadalajara, Mexico City, San Luis Potosi, Saltillo, Puebla and Cuernavaca. This will increase the scope of the Qwest network to 14,400 route miles. When completed in September, 1998, the 2,270-kilometer network will have the ability to offer service to 80 percent of Mexico?s population.
"We?re delighted to be able to extend our network capabilities to Mexico." said Joseph P. Nacchio, Qwest?s president and chief executive officer. "Mexico has an enlightened, pro-competitive telecommunications policy that encourages the use of high technology infrastructure, to bring the latest telecommunications, Internet and electronic commerce services to more of its population. We believe this policy will foster growth and our agreement will enable us to participate in that growth. We look forward to bringing to our customers both in Mexico and the United States the benefits of the Qwest network."
Qwest has reviewed the network construction techniques Bestel is using, and is impressed with the high quality, state of the art construction and the progress being made. Bestel is building the only network in Mexico that utilizes railroad rights of way and thus enjoys an inherent security and reliability advantage over networks using other construction techniques. Qwest and Bestel intend to pursue other opportunities to work together in their respective countries.
Qwest Communications is a rapidly-growing communication services company building a high-capacity, fiber optic technology network for the 21st century. Its 13,000 mile, US network connecting 92 cities will be complete at the end of 1998. Through its cutting-edge technology, Qwest will deliver high-quality voice, data and video connectivity securely and reliably to businesses, consumers and other communications service providers. Further information on Qwest (NASDAQ: QWST) is available on the company's Web site located at http://www.qwest.net.
Bestel is a joint venture between GST Mextel, which is owned by GST Global Telecommunications, Inc. (VSE:GGB) and Odetel, a company owned by Grupo Varo, and was created to develop and implement a Mexican facilities-based long-distance telecommunications company. Bestel will bring competitive telecommunications services to Mexico by targeting business and residential customers, and providing connectivity throughout its geographic reach.
Note to Editors: This release contains or refers to forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 that include, among others, (i) statements by Qwest concerning the benefits expected to result from certain transactions, including, without limitation, synergies in the form of increased revenues, decreased expenses and avoided expenses and expenditures that are expected to be realized by Qwest after the closing of such transactions, (ii) Qwest's plans to complete the Qwest Macro Capacity Fiber Network and (iii) other statements by Qwest of expectations, beliefs, future plans and strategies, anticipated developments and other matters that are not historical facts. Qwest cautions the reader that these forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, including financial, regulatory environment, and trend projections, that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by the statements. Such risks and uncertainties include those risks, uncertainties and risk factors identified, among other places, in documents filed with Securities and Exchange Commission. The most important factors that could prevent Qwest from achieving its stated goals include, but are not limited to, (a) failure by Qwest to manage effectively, cost efficiently and on a timely basis the construction of the Qwest Network route segments, (b) failure by Qwest to enter into additional customer contracts to sell dark fiber or provide high-volume capacity and otherwise expand its telecommunications customer base on the Qwest Network, (c) failure by Qwest to obtain and maintain all necessary rights-of-way, (d) intense competition in Qwest's carrier services and commercial services markets, (e) the potential for rapid and significant changes in technology and their effect on Qwest's operations, (f) operating and financial risks related to managing rapid growth and integrating acquired businesses, (g) adverse changes in the regulatory environment, and (h) failure by Qwest to integrate the respective operations of Qwest and certain acquired businesses or to achieve the synergies expected from certain transactions. These cautionary statements should be considered in connection with any subsequent written or oral forward-looking statements that may be issued by Qwest or persons acting on its behalf. Qwest undertakes 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.
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