News Brief

MCI Inc. will offer and support DSL services in more than 300 metropolitan areas across the United States through New Edge Networks’ expanded broadband reach called BigFoot. New Edge Networks will enable MCI to triple its current DSL footprint to reach more than 7,800 switching locations nationwide. MCI will enhance its current DSL services and roll out new ones. This fall, MCI plans to launch a suite of new Internet Solo Asymmetric DSL offerings to deliver more affordable Internet connectivity for small and medium-size businesses and teleworkers. MCI’s new Internet DSL services along with its IP VPN Broadband Service will provide a low-cost, secure, “always-on” connectivity option for businesses in new markets.

Covista Communications Inc. is selling select commercial accounts, switches and related facilities to PAETEC Communications Inc. for $15.1 million. Covista expects the agreement to close in the second quarter. PAETEC will assume leases for switch facilities in New York and Philadelphia, as well as office locations in Bensalem, Pa., and Paramus, N.J. Covista also will enter a wholesale agreement to purchase $12 million in services from PAETEC over 24 months. Payment to Covista is due in three installments and subject to final adjustment, according to Chattanooga, Tenn.-based Covista.

LecStar Telecom Inc. has announced an agreement with an undisclosed regional electric utility to test high-speed Internet access over the power lines during a six-month field trial. Atlantabased LecStar plans to offer 30 utility customers broadband service, and about one in five customers also will receive phone service over the power lines as part of a VoIP test.

European Connection Inc. (ECI) has purchased Mobile, Ala.-based VoipAge Telecommunications LLC, a provider of wholesale and retail VoIP services to consumers and businesses. ECI says it will continue to serve VoipAge customers.

8×8 Inc. says a deal with Level 3 Communications Inc. will allow 8×8 to expand Internet-based phone service to areas including Beverly Hills, Calif.; Bloomington, Ill.; Flagstaff, Ariz.; and Rockaway, N.J. The agreement allows 8×8 to cover 300 area codes and 2,400 rate centers, which are geographic areas used by local phone companies to set rate boundaries for billing and issuing phone numbers.

Covad Communications Group Inc. has completed its acquisition of GoBeam Inc., a privately owned VoIP solutions provider, moving Covad from solely being a broadband operator to offering integrated voice and data services. Terms of the agreement call for Covad to issue approximately 20 million shares to GoBeam’s shareholders, as well as approximately $1.5 million in cash and stock to key GoBeam employees.

Rodopi Software and Inc. are integrating their technologies to give service providers private-label e-mail and Web hosting. Rodopi specializes in back-office software, while Hostopia focuses on Web hosting. The companies say the new package automates service providers’ provisioning, billing and customer care functions in a Web environment, and can be offered to third parties. San Francisco-based Inc21 Communications is the first company to use Rodopi’s automated back-office platform to manage Hostopia’s Web hosting services.


8×8 Inc. www.8×
Covad Communications Group Inc.
Covista Communications Inc.
European Connection Inc.
GoBeam Inc. Inc.
Inc21 Communications
LecStar Telecom Inc.
Level 3 Communications Inc.
MCI Inc.
New Edge Networks
PAETEC Communications Inc.
Rodopi Software

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