Williams Communications Sells Capacity to LCI

THE JOURNAL RECORD, October 15, 1997 | Go to article overview

Williams Communications Sells Capacity to LCI


TULSA (JR) -- Williams Communications Group has signed a multimillion dollar agreement to sell LCI International the long- term right to use capacity on the newest segment of its rapidly expanding network -- a 2,000-mile Dallas-Washington route.

Williams Communications, which pioneered installation of fiber- optic cable along highly secure pipeline rights of way, already owns and operates the fifth-largest fiber-optic network in the United States. Its 11,000-mile multimedia network is managed by its Vyvx business unit.

Construction and exchange agreements will expand the Williams Communications network to some 19,000 route miles by the end of 1998 with additional expansion planned in 1999. "This transaction underscores our status as the industry leader in building and maintaining high-quality, highly secure fiber-optic networks," said Howard Janzen, president and chief executive officer of Williams Communications. "Providing `dark fiber' to companies like LCI contributes to our aim of controlling costs for our own customers." LCI secures the long-term right to use 12 high-capacity fibers on the Williams Communications route -- equivalent to more than 24,000 fiber miles. Construction on the route was commenced in July. Plans call for the network to be completed from Washington to Atlanta by year end and for the remainder of the route to be finished by June 1998. "Buying the right to use these routes from Williams Communications allows us to move more traffic onto our owned network and decrease our cost structure," said Joseph A. Lawrence, LCI's senior vice president and chief financial officer. "This agreement also will enhance our current network configuration to accommodate LCI's continued growth, and will result in quicker provisioning and improved service quality for LCI customers." Construction primarily utilizes the right of way of the Transcontinental Gas Pipeline (Transco) system. Like Williams Communications, Transco is a business unit of The Williams Companies. …

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