AFC finalizes agreement with Verizon for FTTP equipment

4 February 2004 Petaluma, CA Lightwave -- AFC has signed a definitive agreement with Verizon for Fiber-to-the-Premises (FTTP) equipment. Per the agreement--which extends through 2008--AFC's FiberDirect solution will provide Verizon with the central office and premises electronics, or "active" elements, of FTTP technology. AFC's FiberDirect will facilitate the build out of an all-fiber network with virtually unlimited bandwidth to Verizon's business and residential customers.

Feb 4th, 2004

4 February 2004 Petaluma, CA Lightwave -- AFC has signed a definitive agreement with Verizon for Fiber-to-the-Premises (FTTP) equipment. Per the agreement--which extends through 2008--AFC's FiberDirect solution will provide Verizon with the central office and premises electronics, or "active" elements, of FTTP technology. AFC's FiberDirect will facilitate the build out of an all-fiber network with virtually unlimited bandwidth to Verizon's business and residential customers.

"This is a significant milestone in the history of our company, and we are very pleased that Verizon has selected AFC as the primary supplier of FTTP access equipment," asserts John Schofield, chairman, president, and CEO of AFC. "Success of this magnitude only happens through teamwork, and this agreement reflects the outstanding individual and group efforts by both companies to be leaders in their respective markets. This is the beginning of a major, long-term transition of the infrastructure of the access network."

At the foundation of AFC's FiberDirect solution is the company's AccessMax, which is designed to simultaneously deliver a full suite of narrowband, wideband, and broadband services. Its inherent flexibility supports both passive optical networks (PONs) and packet softswitch interfaces--all from a common platform.

With the addition of a PON plug-in card, AFC's AccessMAX platforms can be easily upgraded to FiberDirect systems. The FTTP solution adheres to the applicable NEBS requirements and is environmentally hardened, so PONs may be extended from either the central office or remote cabinet environment. AFC designed FiberDirect around the Full Service Access Network (FSAN) standard that is accepted by large carriers in the U.S. and in international markets.

AFC and Verizon commenced preliminary investigations during the fourth quarter of 2003 and field trials are set to begin in the summer of 2004.

"AFC is also looking to leverage its FiberDirect solution globally, as we gain experience and volume in North America," adds Schofield. "We believe the rest of the global opportunity for fiber-based access systems is about 1.5 times as large as North America, representing a significant opportunity for AFC."

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