San Antonio, Texas,–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–Dec. 10, 2002–To further establish itself as a national telecommunications leader, SBC Communications Inc. (NYSE:SBC) today announced it will move to a single national brand – SBC. Use of the SBC brand will provide a more unified presence in the marketplace, making it easier for customers to find and do business with SBC companies across geographic boundaries and product lines.
The move to a single national brand will unify offerings previously marketed through regional brands such as SBC Southwestern Bell, SBC Pacific Bell, SBC Nevada Bell and SBC Ameritech. SBC companies will continue to offer wireless service nationwide through Cingular Wireless, SBC’s joint venture with BellSouth.
“Adopting a single, unified SBC brand underscores our transformation from a collection of regional companies with separate identities into a national telecommunications leader with a single identity,” said Edward E. Whitacre Jr., chairman and CEO, SBC Communications Inc. “Our main competitors today possess national brands. To compete more effectively, it’s critical for SBC to position itself as what it is – the leading national brand in the telecommunications industry.”
The brand change is representative of the increasingly important role SBC plays in the world’s telecommunications market. SBC has dramatically expanded its size, capabilities and geographic reach to better compete and serve its customers. SBC has assembled one of the industry’s most robust product portfolios, which was recently strengthened by alliances with companies such as Yahoo! Inc. and EchoStar, and has a service area spanning approximately one-third of the U.S. population and containing nearly half the Fortune 500 company headquarters.
“Through a series of initiatives including mergers, acquisitions, partnerships, new technology introductions, and perhaps most of all, a relentless focus on execution of its business strategies, SBC has transformed itself from a sleepy local telephone company into one of the world’s most powerful, sophisticated and financially sound communications companies,” said Robert J. Rich, executive vice president, the Yankee Group. “The move to a common brand is an important step forward, and good news for the company, its customers and its shareholders.”
The move to a single brand identity is the harbinger of nationally standardized products and pricing, centralized customer care and the creation of coast-to-coast national data and IP backbone networks. As it gains regulatory approval to offer long-distance service, SBC metropolitan networks are being interconnected with 30 out-of-region networks in markets such as New York City, Boston and Miami. This will enable large companies to buy SBC advanced voice and data services on a regional and national basis. Customers in 50 of the nation’s largest cities will have the ability to buy the full range of SBC data and IP services.
The SBC brand already is a familiar brand to many consumers and businesses. The brand was first introduced when the corporate name was changed to SBC seven years ago. The SBC Global Network tag line was added to regional logos in 1999; and in 2001, SBC was added prominently to the Southwestern Bell, Pacific Bell, Nevada Bell, Ameritech and SNET brand names.
The SBC brand also has been elevated through the company’s entry into long-distance, its position as the nation’s leading DSL provider and its reputation as one of America’s leading corporate citizens. For five consecutive years, SBC has been named by Fortune magazine as the world’s most admired telecommunications company, and for six of the last seven years, SBC has earned the same ranking in the Fortune listing of American telecommunications companies.
“The SBC brand will continue to symbolize the rich legacy of integrity, reliability and quality service customers have traditionally associated with our regional operating companies,” said Whitacre. “While SBC is moving to a national brand, our business will continue to be locally operated and we’ll remain a strong, positive force in the communities where we do business and where our employees live.”
The SBC SNET brand will continue to be used in Connecticut.
SBC Communications Inc. (http://www.sbc.com) is one of the world’s leading data, voice and Internet services providers. Through its world-class networks, SBC companies provide a full range of voice, data, networking and e-business services, as well as directory advertising and publishing. A Fortune 30 company, America’s leading provider of high-speed DSL Internet Access services, and one of the nation’s leading Internet Service Providers, SBC companies currently serve 58 million access lines nationwide. In addition, SBC companies own 60 percent of America’s second-largest wireless company, Cingular Wireless, which serves more than 22 million wireless customers. Internationally, SBC companies have telecommunications investments in 25 countries.
Larry Solomon, 210.351.3990