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Press Release -- March 26th, 2013
Source: Birch Communications
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Birch Completes Acquisition of Covista Communications Assets

Expands Hosted / Managed Product Offerings, Network Footprint and Customer Base!

Atlanta, Ga. – Mar. 26, 2013 - Birch Communications, a leading IP-based communications and cloud services provider to small- and medium-sized businesses, announced today that it has closed the acquisition of select customer and network assets from Covista Communications, Inc. (“Covista”). Covista, which is currently traded under the symbol CVST.PK, is a facilities-based telecommunications service provider that serves business, wholesale and residential customers. This transaction marks the 17th acquisition Birch has closed since 2006.

“This acquisition strengthens the breadth and scope of the Birch IP-Network. Covista’s Metaswitch-based facilities network, with switching centers in Tennessee and New York, complements our current IP-Network and expands it to 10 states," said Vincent M. Oddo, Birch President and CEO. "In addition, several new markets within Tennessee and New York have also been added to our IP-Network footprint. In total, Birch now provides service to customers in 45 states and the District of Columbia.”

"This acquisition greatly enhances our Hosted-PBX, SIP-Trunking and Carrier Services (wholesale) product offerings,” said Chris Aversano, Birch chief operating officer. “We look forward with great enthusiasm to welcoming the former Covista customers into our Birch family and introducing them to our award-winning customer care team, as well as our expanding portfolio of IP-based services.”

About Birch Communications

Headquartered in Atlanta, Ga., Birch Communications provides managed communications and information technology services to a target market of small and medium-sized businesses in select metropolitan areas within 38 states across the United States. Birch services include local and long distance voice, broadband Internet access, T1, PRI, bonded T1, SIP trunking, mobile voice and data, e-mail, voicemail, and many other communications and information technology services. Birch voice and data services are, in most cases, delivered using Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology on the Company’s secure IP-Network rather than over the public Internet. According to Inc. 500|5000 magazine in its 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and 2004 rankings, Birch is one of the fastest-growing private companies in the United States. In 2010, Birch was also named the 7th fastest growing private business in Atlanta, and in 2011 as one of the Top 100 Private Companies in Atlanta, by the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Please visit www.birch.com for more information.

About Covista Communications

Founded in 1983 and currently headquartered in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Covista Communications, Inc. is a competitive local exchange carrier (CLEC) operating in 48 states as well as an FCC 214 international facilities-based carrier. The Company's redundant nationwide network architecture provides mission-critical voice and data applications to customers throughout the United States. The Covista Communication product portfolio extends from traditional switched and dedicated telephone services to the most sophisticated voice and data solutions, hosted IP- PBX services, enhanced wireless services, data storage, and business continuity/disaster recovery services.

Birch Communications Media Contact:
Greg Corwin, Director of Marketing
greg.corwin@birch.com
816.300.1686

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