Verizon Wireless Announces Groundbreaking Of Regional Headquarters In Franklin, Tennessee

NASHVILLE, TN — State of Tennessee Commissioner of Economic Development, Matthew Kisber, and State of Tennessee Department of Revenue Commissioner Reagan Farr, joined Jerry Fountain, Verizon Wireless President of the Carolinas/Tennessee Region today, to announce the initial construction phase of Verizon Wireless' high-tech regional headquarters facility in Franklin.

"We are delighted to celebrate the groundbreaking of our new facility as we further expand our presence in the state of Tennessee," comments Regional President Fountain. "We are indebted to Governor Bredesen, the commissioners, mayors, other distinguished leaders and the community at large for embracing us. We look forward to building the facility and its opening, hiring employees and growing our presence in this market."

Verizon Wireless will hire 600 to 700 new employees over the next three to five years to work in the $54 million regional headquarters. The company currently employs over 2,200 people in the state of Tennessee. Approximately 550 Nashville area Verizon Wireless employees will relocate to the 180,000 sq. ft. facility, building capacity to over 1,300 when it is fully operational in fall 2008.

Ninety-five percent of the subcontractors working on the building project are local area residents, representing the majority of the workforce, and are estimated to work 75,000-80,000 man-hours on the building project.

"The jobs created by Verizon Wireless represent the type of high skill, better paying job positions we aim to create for Tennesseans," comments Commissioner Kisber. "I'm thrilled that Verizon Wireless chose this great investment in Tennessee and our people, and I look forward to continuing to partner with them on their success."

In an effort to make the new regional headquarters as energy efficient as possible, Verizon Wireless and architect SPACE/NELSON will treat the windows with a UV-blocking glaze and window coverings, a roofing system to help regulate heating and cooling and pervious pavement to keep the parking area cooler.

"Verizon Wireless and the state of Tennessee represent a win-win for the community," comments Commissioner Farr. "The job growth and the economic infusion into the area will have a positive, lasting impact on this state. The fact that they chose to expand here in Tennessee speaks volumes for our state and is a positive message for others seeking to live and work in our thriving community."

The new regional headquarters facility falls squarely in line with Verizon Wireless' workforce development efforts to provide competitive compensation and outstanding benefits to employees. Verizon Wireless currently operates a $26 million National Number Portability/ Customer Contact Center in Murfreesboro (built in 2003) and a 150-employee Customer Loyalty Call Center in Nashville.

"We are extremely pleased with Verizon Wireless' decision to expand in the Middle Tennessee area, and look forward to the prosperity that will result from their increased presence in the Nashville region," said Matt Largen, Director of Business Recruitment for the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce. "As Verizon Wireless takes the next step to break ground on the new site, we welcome the company's continued investment in the region and will do all we can to support their future growth."

Verizon Wireless is the state's leading wireless provider and has the most complete coverage of any other wireless provider in Tennessee. The company invested more than $545 million over the past four years to expand and enhance its wireless network to stay ahead of the growing demand for its products and services.

"We are thrilled that Verizon Wireless chose the Aspen Corporate Center to locate their headquarters, and are looking forward to building a long-term business relationship with them," comments Jeff Palmquist, Senior Vice President of Duke Realty's Nashville Group.

About Verizon WirelessVerizon Wireless operates the nation's most reliable wireless voice and data network, serving 62.1 million customers. The largest U.S. wireless company and largest wireless data provider, based on revenues, Verizon Wireless is headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with 67,000 employees nationwide. The company is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.

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