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News

GE commercial finance & communications commits $35 million to a $95 million senior debt facility

AZDEL : 04 March, 2006  (Company News)
GE Commercial Finance Global Media & Communications announced today that it will serve as administrative agent for a $95 million senior debt facility for Otelco Inc., a leading rural local exchange carrier.
With headquarters in Oneonta, Alabama, Otelco operates five RLECs in Alabama and Missouri with approximately 33,300 access lines, a long distance business, a cable television company, and an Internet access business. Otelco is one of the 50 largest local telephone companies in the U.S.

GE Commercial Finance committed $35 million to the facility, which will help support a recapitalization of Otelco in connection with an initial public offering via Income Deposit Securities. As a newly public company, Otelco is now listed on the AMEX, under the symbol OTT and on the TSX under the symbol OTT.un.

'We greatly appreciate the commitment we received from GE Commercial Finance Global Media & Communications in support of this very significant transitional step for Otelco as we prepare for future growth,' said Michael Weaver, Otelco chief executive officer.

Seaport Capital has been an equity sponsor of Otelco. Based in New York City, Seaport Capital is a leading equity provider to middle market media, telecommunications, information and business services companies. 'GE Commercial Finance, which has provided support for our transactions for several years, has once again shown both a keen understanding of our strategic goals as well as our financing needs,' said Steve McCall, partner, Seaport Capital. 'As always, GE's Global Media & Communications team was knowledgeable of our needs, and highly dedicated to our goals throughout the transaction process.'

'Otelco strongly illustrates the opportunity of well managed, locally focused telecommunications providers, an industry sector where our group has deep knowledge and an ongoing track record of delivery of capital for essential growth initiatives,' said Mark Bernier, senior vice president, Global Media & Communications. 'We are pleased to have had the opportunity to assist Otelco and to demonstrate again our commitment to this sector.'
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