DENVER - June 18, 1998 - Qwest today moved to intervene in the AT&T-led complaints at the Federal Communications Commission and lawsuits before two Federal District Courts, which argue for the termination of U S WEST?s and Ameritech?s innovative marketing arrangements with Qwest. Although not previously named in AT&T?s suits against U S WEST and Ameritech, Qwest has asked both the FCC and the Federal District Courts to allow Qwest to enter the proceedings as a party. Qwest has declared that AT&T?s efforts to halt the marketing agreements are limiting competition and wrongly denying Qwest significant profits.
In addition, Qwest has asked the Federal District Court in Seattle to raise the bond AT&T and the other plaintiffs must post to $4 million. This amount would minimally insure against Qwest?s lost profits and customer acquisitions as a result of AT&T and the other plaintiffs wrongly seeking a preliminary injunction against the U S WEST Buyer?s Advantage program.
In May, Qwest entered into marketing agreements with U S WEST (Buyer?s Advantage) and Ameritech (CompleteAccessSM) where customers in the respective regions would be able to sign up for local phone service packaged with a competitively priced long distance service from Qwest. In the first month after the commercial introduction of U S WEST?s Buyer?s Advantage program, over 130,000 customers in the U S WEST region signed up for the service.
?We are encouraged by the Commission?s recent actions following AT&T?s heavy-handed efforts against the Buyer?s Advantage and CompleteAccess programs. As a party to these matters, Qwest intends to urge the FCC to rule in favor of customer choice and allow new market entrants to compete with the giant long distance phone companies that currently control over 70% of the market,? said Joseph Garrity, senior legal director of Qwest Communications. ?These lawsuits are hampering the spirit of competition, protecting an entrenched oligopoly and preventing innovative service providers, like Qwest, from implementing new programs that provide customers with low cost, value-added services for which they have long asked.?
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 with the SEC, specifically the most recent reports on Form 10-Q, 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 complete the network on schedule, volatility of stock price, financial risk management and future growth subject to risks.
The Qwest logo is a registered trademark of Qwest Communications International Inc. in the U.S. and certain other countries.
Qwest Media Contact