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Verio Adds $60 Million to Qwest Pact

Qwest Communications International Inc. Thursday said Verio Inc. will provide an additional $60 million towards the companies' joint efforts in developing high-speed, broadband Internet services.

The announcement extends the companies' 15-year, $100 million original agreement and also extends Verio's commitment terms from seven to 10 years.

Verio said the new contract will provide greater flexibility in using circuits from 64 kilobits per second to 2.4 gigabits per second as customer demands grow.

Verio's customer base has expanded by an additional 105,000 subscribers following the completion of its acquisition of Hiway Technologies Inc. and now counts more than 260,000 users. This recent expansion and the development of high-speed applications for the enterprise fueled the company's decision to further its ties with Qwest, the according to Verio.

"We are pleased to expand our business relationship with Verio," said Gregory M. Casey, senior vice president of wholesale markets for Qwest. "Verio is one of the fastest growing providers of enhanced Internet services, and because of the advanced nature of our network, Qwest can provide them with the convenience and flexibility of bandwidth on demand."

Verio is converting a major portion of its capacity to Qwest's high speed fiber optic network. Verio said it exceeded its year-end target to activate 10,000 miles on the Qwest fiber network and has more than 12,000 miles of capacity in service. Fifty percent of Verio's traffic is currently carried on the Qwest network and it plans to further expand network capacity as Qwest finalizes its nationwide network.

"The performance and cost competitiveness of the Qwest fiber is compelling, especially at OC-3 (155 megabits per second) and higher speeds," said Chris DeMarche, chief technical officer for Verio. "Qwest has been a valuable partner to us in providing capacity to keep up with the rapid growth of our IP network, which is ranked in the top 10 in the country in speed and size."