Qwest to Extend Fiber-Optic Internet Network into Southern France and Spain



  • KPNQwestnetwork extended to approximately 11,800 miles
  • 7th ring brings total number of cities in EuroRings network to 46
  • Lyons, Marseilles, Barcelona, Valencia, Madrid, Bilbao, Bordeaux, Toulouse linked
  • Massive bandwidth to drive Internet revolution in Iberian Peninsula

DENVER, January 10, 2000 ? Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q), the broadband Internet communications company, today announced that its European joint venture, KPNQwest, plans to invest up to $305 million to construct a seventh high-capacity fiber-optic network ring.  Work on the new Iberian Ring, linking seven additional cities in Southern France and Spain into KPNQwest?s pan-European and Qwest?s North American networks, will start mid-2000. The 2,500-mile Iberian Ring brings the total size of KPNQwest?s European network to approximately 11,800 miles.

The new ring will link Lyons, Marseilles, Barcelona, Valencia, Madrid, Bilbao, Bordeaux and Toulouse. At Lyons, the ring joins seamlessly with KPNQwest?s Southern EuroRing and reaches the 39 other European business centers served by KPNQwest?s EuroRings network.  The addition of the Iberian Ring brings the total number of EuroRings completed or under construction to seven, covering a total of 46 European business centers.

Construction of the routes for the 96-strand hybrid fiber-optic cable is scheduled to be completed and ready for service by fall 2001.  The company already has significant customer interest in the newly announced extension to the EuroRings network.

Jack McMaster, President and CEO of KPNQwest, said: "With the Iberian EuroRing, we are extending our pan-European footprint to reach the important multinational industrial and business centers in Southern France and Spain. This network extension will enable KPNQwest to extend its Internet-based services to customers in Southern France and the Iberian Peninsula and to connect them across Europe and, with Qwest?s 24,500 mile network, into North America."

Commenting on the financial aspects of the initiative, McMaster went on to say: "This investment is in line with the construction costs we have experienced throughout the rest of Europe and reflects our confidence in the massive demand for high quality broadband Internet networks linking Europe and the US.  We expect the Iberian Ring to generate new revenues by leveraging our existing Internet assets on the Iberian Peninsula, namely EUnet Spain and EUnet Portugal".

Henjo Groenewegen, Chief Operating Officer and the driving force behind the EuroRings network construction, said:  "The construction of the Iberian EuroRing is the logical extension of the current phase of our fiber-optic deployment plan.  Our current construction rollout is meeting all financial and implementation milestones and we are therefore confident in extending our network through Southern France and into Spain.  As with our other network construction architecture, the Iberian EuroRing will include a spare duct for future upgrades, as well as state-of-the-art technology and equipment for ensuring the highest quality of service for enabling the Internet revolution in Europe."

About Qwest
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 24,500 miles in North America.  For more information, please visit the Qwest web site at www.qwest.com.

About KPNQwest
KPNQwest (NASDAQ & ASE: KQIP) is a leading facilities-based, pan-European provider of data-centric Internet protocol-based services to business customers.  It is deploying a technologically advanced fibre-optic network connecting 46 cities throughout Europe, enabling the company to provide a broad range of high-speed, high-quality data-centric Internet protocol-based services and other advanced telecommunications services. The company is the one of the largest business ISPs in Europe with operations in 14 countries. KPNQwest has 12 CyberCentres? and plans a further 6 mega-CyberCentres?, of which two are extensions of existing CyberCentres?, on its high-capacity fibre-optic network to provide web-hosting, application sharing and telehousing services. Website: www.kpnqwest.com

This communication shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy nor shall there be any sale of these securities in any state in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such state or jurisdiction.

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 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, adverse changes in the regulatory or legislative environment, and failure to complete the merger with U S WEST and achieve projected synergies and financial results timely or at all. 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.

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Contact Information
Qwest Media Contact
Matt Barkett
Outside Contacts:
Media Contact
Piers Schreiber
+31 23 568 7612
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