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  • Level 3's Midwest Fiber Optic Network Sold to CenturyTel
Jan 2004
BROOMFIELD, Colo., Jan. 2 -- Level 3 Communications Inc. has completed the previously announced sale of the Midwest Fiber Optic Network (MFON) to CenturyTel. MFON is a regional communications system that Level 3 acquired through a transaction with Genuity Inc. earlier this year.

CenturyTel purchased the stand-alone system, which serves as a regional backbone for a number of carriers, including CenturyTel itself, in Arkansas, Missouri and Illinois. Level 3 said it expects to receive approximately $17 million from CenturyTel, including cash consideration of approximately $16 million for the business and $1 million in accounts receivable. The purchase price is subject to post-closing adjustments; however, those adjustments are not expected to be material.

"We are pleased to have finalized the sale of this non-core asset," said Sunit Patel, Level 3's CFO. "The geography and architecture of MFON did not offer us a cost-effective way to integrate its operations into our own. As such, we believe it made business sense to generate cash through this transaction with CenturyTel."

Level 3 said the MFON purchase is "highly complementary" to both CenturyTel's existing ILEC operations and its fiber transport subsidiary, Lightcore. It provides transport cost efficiencies and increased fiber transport capacity in Missouri and Arkansas, expanding the network by 1,400 route miles and more than 100 additional points of presence, the company said.

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