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WorldCom Debuts Managed Hosting

WorldCom (Nasdaq: WCOM) announced Monday (Nov 13) the immediate U.S. availability of an expanded global web hosting product suite to include high-end managed hosting services through a recently signed deal with Digex Inc. (Nasdaq: DIGX).

In addition, Digex will connect its Internet data centers to the WorldCom global IP network and will utilize WorldCom's sales force to enhance its global presence.

"This broadens our portfolio so now we can offer everything from colocation up to the most complex managed hosting," Ron McMurtrie, WorldCom VP e-business, said today.

The agreement, which closely follows WorldCom's recent announcement of its intent to acquire Intermedia and a controlling stake in Digex, immediately enables WorldCom and Digex to meet the growing demand from customers for flexible, e-business solutions in today's digital economy. The expanded hosting product suite will be available immediately in the US, by year's end in Europe and by early 2001 in Asia Pacific.

"This agreement greatly accelerates the many benefits our customers can expect with the completion of the Intermedia acquisition and its majority ownership of Digex," McMurtrie said. WorldCom's Intermedia acquisition is expected to close in Q1 2001.

WorldCom's expanded offerings include Digex's professional engineering services, e-commerce solutions and its high-end, fully managed NT and UNIX e-platform hosting services. The company's comprehensive managed hosting services include: site architecture and configuration; migration planning; capacity planning; leased hardware and software; implementation services; server monitoring; backup and recovery; traffic and web site reporting; performance testing; security management including firewalls, security scanning and site vulnerability assessment; managed storage; disaster recovery; and help-desk support among other value-added functions.

This new unified suite of global managed web hosting products complements WorldCom's existing set of colocation, shared and dedicated hosting services that run over the company's global IP network and through its data centers located throughout the United States, Europe and Asia Pacific. In early 2001, the company will complete its $1.2 billion build-out of its global data center footprint.

"What Digex has built is the capability to deploy servers in a high-volume manner, anywhere in the world," Bobby Patrick, Digex VP strategy, said today. "What Digex brings to the table is the ability to manage it all from a single interface."

That single interface comes in the form of myDigex, a new interactive client portal launched last month through an initiative between Digex, Compaq and Microsoft.

In mid-November, Digex will transition and upgrade its data center connectivity to WorldCom's Internet network that runs through North America, South America, Europe, Asia and Australia with over 2,500 Points of Presence (PoPs). Digex will connect each of its five SmartCenter data centers to the WorldCom global IP network with redundant links at each facility and plans to upgrade its data center connectivity to OC-48 by mid-2001. Digex customers will benefit from enhanced content delivery, a more robust network infrastructure, faster traffic "hand-off" and access to new network technologies.

"We expect Digex's use of the powerful WorldCom global IP network to add a new level of performance and stability to our Digex hosting services that will enable us to extend our innovative services going forward," said Todd Carlson, SVP business operations, Digex.