Bell Atlantic to Offer Long-Distance Services
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February 13, 1996
BELL ATLANTIC MOVES TO OFFER
Company Makes Initial
Filings In Five States
Arlington, VA -- Bell Atlantic Communications, Inc., the company's
long-distance unit, will take advantage of the new telecommunications
reform law by seeking the regulatory go-ahead to offer long-distance
Today the company announced it has officially launched its drive to
bring true long-distance competition to consumers and businesses by
filing applications with regulators in
North Carolina, Florida,
Illinois, South Carolina and Texas. Bell Atlantic anticipates it will
be in the marketplace in these states as it gains approval from state
"Today, Bell Atlantic is making history, becoming the first of the
regional Bell companies to enter the long-distance business, which
until now has been dominated by the Big Three," said Bell Atlantic
Communications President Al Binford.
Until President Clinton signed the telecommunications reform
legislation on Feb. 8, some of the strongest potential competitors --
companies such as Bell Atlantic -- were barred from the long-distance
"That is no longer the case," Binford said. "The
down the barriers that prevented us from offering full long-distance
service. Bell Atlantic will be a formidable competitor."
Last fall, Bell Atlantic NYNEX Mobile became the first Bell-affiliated
cellular company to offer long-distance service to its customers,
starting in Connecticut and New York. On Feb. 8, the cellular company
announced the service would be extended to its entire customer base
from Maine to the Carolinas, beginning next month.
Binford, a former executive at AT&T, noted that Bell Atlantic will
resell services of facilities-based interexchange carriers. "A
of major national carriers have been competing to provide facilities
for us," he said. "The terms we obtain from these carriers
will translate into better value for our customers."
He added that Bell Atlantic will back up its new services with a
strong marketing campaign.
Under the new law, Bell Atlantic is still prohibited from offering
long-distance service within its region. In order to offer the
service within its territory, the company first must meet a
competitive checklist designed to assure the local telephone market is
open to competitors.
"We intend to move quickly to meet those requirements so we can
long-distance service in our home region," said Binford.
He added that with today's announcement, Bell Atlantic "meets the
commitment we made last week -- to act on our long-distance plans
within five days of President Clinton's signing of the new
Bell Atlantic Corporation (NYSE: BEL) is at the forefront of the new
communications, entertainment and information industry. In the
mid-Atlantic region, the company is the premier provider of local
telecommunications and advanced services. Globally, it is one of the
largest investors in the high-growth wireless communication
marketplace. Bell Atlantic also owns a substantial interest in
Telecom Corporation of New Zealand and is actively developing
high-growth national and international business opportunities in all
phases of the industry.
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