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Press Release -- July 7th, 2011
Source: Level 3 Communications
Tags: CDN, Content Delivery, Ethernet, Exchange, Expansion, Video

Level 3 Renews and Expands Agreement with Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association

Level 3 to Provide Advanced Services to Independent BCBSA Companies that Provide Health Coverage for One-in-Three Americans

BROOMFIELD, Colo., July 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Level 3 Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:  LVLT) today announced that the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association has renewed its agreement with Level 3. The association, based in Chicago, provides healthcare coverage for nearly 98 million members — nearly a third of the U.S. population.

Under the terms of the renewed two-year agreement, Level 3 will now offer content delivery network (CDN) and other managed services, including managed Ethernet access and protection against distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks to the independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies across the nation. Level 3 will also continue to provide BCBSA with voice, video and data services.

By enabling reliable, scalable and secure network services, Level 3 will better enable the BCBSA to stay ahead of the evolving demands of the healthcare industry, including the changing requirements of healthcare reform, new healthcare IT mandates from the federal stimulus package, as well as the growing focus on and demand for electronic medical records.

"For healthcare IT, the network is like the central nervous system — it's that important," said Andrew Crouch, president of Sales for Level 3. "Over the Level 3 network, Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies can support their customers with highly efficient customer service portals and contact center solutions while innovating with cloud computing applications, unified communications, and even regulatory compliance software."

With Level 3 serving as a BCBSA national provider for communications services, members' plans will now be able to provide services based on the pricing negotiated in the renewed contract, which include:

  • Network connectivity to support data center networks, storage area networks and business continuity/disaster recovery networks as the adoption of electronic health records increases
  • Wide area networking (WAN) services to support claims processing, websites and telemedicine
  • Long-distance voice and advanced toll-free and local service to support contact centers
  • Internet connectivity for remote workers, patients and customers to connect to Web portals
  • SIP Trunking to accelerate unified communications for operational and cost efficiencies, enhanced internal and external communications

For more information on Level 3's advanced network and service offerings, visit www.level3.com.

About the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 39 independent, community-based and locally operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide healthcare coverage for nearly 98 million members - one-in-three Americans. For more information on the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and its member companies, please visit www.BCBS.com.

About Level 3 Communications

Level 3 Communications, Inc. (NYSE:LVLT, news, filings) is a leading international provider of fiber-based communications services. Enterprise, content, wholesale and government customers rely on Level 3 to deliver services with an industry-leading combination of scalability and value over an end-to-end fiber network. Level 3 offers a portfolio of metro and long-haul services, including transport, data, Internet, content delivery and voice. For more information, visit www.Level3.com.

© Level 3 Communications, LLC.  All Rights Reserved.  Level 3, Level 3 Communications and the Level 3 Communications Logo  are either registered service marks or service marks of Level 3 Communications, LLC and/or one of its Affiliates in the United States and/or other countries.  Level 3 services are provided by wholly owned subsidiaries of Level 3 Communications, Inc.  Any other service names, product names, company names or logos included herein are the trademarks or service marks of their respective owners.

Forward-Looking Statement

Some of the statements made in this press release are forward looking in nature. These statements are based on management's current expectations or beliefs. These forward looking statements are not a guarantee of performance and are subject to a number of uncertainties and other factors, many of which are outside Level 3's control, which could cause actual events to differ materially from those expressed or implied by the statements. The most important factors that could prevent Level 3 from achieving its stated goals include, but are not limited to:  the current uncertainty in the global financial markets and the global economy; a discontinuation of the development and expansion of the Internet as a communications medium and marketplace for the distribution and consumption of data and video; and disruptions in the financial markets that could affect Level 3's ability to obtain additional financing.  Additional factors include, but are not limited to, the company's ability to: increase and maintain the volume of traffic on its network; develop effective business support systems; manage system and network failures or disruptions; develop new services that meet customer demands and generate acceptable margins; defend intellectual property and proprietary rights; adapt to rapid technological changes that lead to further competition; attract and retain qualified management and other personnel; successfully integrate acquisitions; and meet all of the terms and conditions of debt obligations. Additional information concerning these and other important factors can be found within Level 3's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Statements in this press release should be evaluated in light of these important factors. Level 3 is under no obligation to, and expressly disclaims any such obligation to, update or alter its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

Contact Information
Media: Investors:
Monica Martinez Mark Stoutenberg
720-888-3991 720-888-2518
Monica.Martinez@Level3.com Mark.Stoutenberg@Level3.com

SOURCE Level 3 Communications

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