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Leading Practices Study to Drive Sales Performance, Contribute Profitable Revenue to Qwest and Partners

DENVER, January 22, 2004 - Qwest Communications Inc. and the Qwest Business Partner Program (QBPP) today announced the results of the program?s first leading practices study. Conducted by Deloitte Consulting LLP and commissioned by Qwest, the study is an in-depth, fact-based analysis of leading sales practices that drive top performance among QBPP participants and ultimately contribute profitable revenue of business customer sales to the company and to its partners.

The study provides a composite model of leading practices and suggests easy-to-adopt training plans as offered by the Qwest sales team. In the first quarter of 2004, the QBPP will offer to all Qwest business partners a leading practices template so that business partners can develop and implement their own roadmap based on their current performance, external benchmarks, leading practices, and future goals.

?The information compiled in the leading practices study will be useful in plotting my direction in sales, marketing and operations,? said Ron Dunworth, owner of ADVODA, a Qwest Business Partner. ?I feel that by implementing some of the process and methods developed as ?best practices,? I will be able to grow my business at a faster rate than I originally planned.?

According to the study, Qwest?s more profitable business partners:

  • Serve a more mature customer base (customers served for greater than three to five years)
  • Have been in business longer than other partners (47 percent of profitable partner companies have been in business greater than 10 years)
  • Have a longer business planning horizon than other partners (41 percent forecast at least 13 to 18 months)
  • Represent fewer number of carriers than other partners
  • Are deploying a blended business model comprised of direct and indirect sales channels
  • Provide a consultative approach or "total solution" for the customer's communications needs.

?The leading practices study is a valuable exercise in identifying the collective strengths of our business partners and our partner program,? said Patrick B. Lewis, senior vice president of the Qwest Business Partner Program. ?With this analysis, our program and its participating business partners have the information and guidance to achieve top sales performance in 2004.?

?This study is unique in the telecommunications industry and underscores Qwest?s commitment to the long-term success of its business partners,? said Elizabeth Faber, Deloitte Consulting LLP Senior Manager.

Study results are based on the responses of 51 Qwest Business Partners, or 23 percent of the QBPP?s base of active business partners. Participating business partners represent diverse business models, from master agents and solutions integrators to value-added resellers.

The QBPP released the leading practices study as part of the program?s fourth annual partner event, called Q.Marketplace 2004. Held January 21-22 in Broomfield, Colo., more than 200 business partners are attending this year?s event. The event?s presentations, breakout sessions and Q&A offer attendees the opportunity to receive latest information and news in the areas of Qwest?s sales, network and operations, and product and pricing. Also included is information on Qwest?s strategy, emerging products and operations for 2004.

Richard C. Notebaert, Qwest chairman and CEO, provided the event?s keynote address, followed by Clifford Holtz, executive vice president of Qwest Business Markets Group; Patrick B. Lewis, senior vice president of the Qwest Business Partner Program; Robert D. Tregemba, senior vice president of Qwest Network Services, and Patricia Engels, executive vice president of Qwest Product Management.

About Qwest

Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q) is a leading provider of voice, video and data services to more than 25 million customers. The company?s 47,000 employees are committed to the ?Spirit of Service? and providing world-class services that exceed customers? expectations for quality, value and reliability. For more information, please visit the Qwest Web site at www.qwest.com.

Forward Looking Statement Note

This release may contain projections and other 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 us with the Securities and Exchange Commission, 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 but not limited to: the duration and extent of the current economic downturn in our 14-state local service area, including its effect on our customers and suppliers; access line losses due to increased competition, including from technology substitution of our access lines with wireless and cable alternatives; our substantial indebtedness, and our inability to complete any efforts to de-lever our balance sheet through asset sales or other transactions; any adverse outcome of the SEC's current investigation into our accounting policies, practices and procedures and certain transactions; any adverse outcome of the current investigation by the U.S. Attorney's office in Denver into certain matters relating to us; adverse results of increased review and scrutiny by Congress, regulatory authorities, media and others (including any internal analyses) of financial reporting issues and practices or otherwise; further delays in making required public filings with the SEC; rapid and significant changes in technology and markets; any adverse developments in commercial disputes or legal proceedings, including any adverse outcome of current or future legal proceedings related to matters that are the subject of governmental investigations, and, to the extent not covered by insurance, if any, our inability to satisfy any resulting obligations from funds available to us, if any; potential fluctuations in quarterly results; volatility of our stock price; intense competition in the markets in which we compete including the likelihood of certain of our competitors emerging from bankruptcy court protection or otherwise reorganizing their capital structure and competing effectively against us; changes in demand for our products and services; acceleration of the deployment of advanced new services, such as broadband data, wireless and video services, which could require substantial expenditure of financial and other resources in excess of contemplated levels; higher than anticipated employee levels, capital expenditures and operating expenses; adverse changes in the regulatory or legislative environment affecting our business; and changes in the outcome of future events from the assumed outcome included in our significant accounting policies.

The information contained in this release is a statement of Qwest's present intention, belief or expectation and is based upon, among other things, the existing regulatory environment, industry conditions, market conditions and prices, the economy in general and Qwest's assumptions. Qwest may change its intention, belief or expectation, at any time and without notice, based upon any changes in such factors, in Qwest's assumptions or otherwise. The cautionary statements contained or referred to in this release should be considered in connection with any subsequent written or oral forward-looking statements that Qwest or persons acting on its behalf may issue. This release may include analysts' estimates and other information prepared by third parties for which Qwest assumes no responsibility.

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.

By including any information in this release, Qwest does not necessarily acknowledge that disclosure of such information is required by applicable law or that the information is material.

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