Financial: Ameritech Annual Report Highlights European Expansion, Forecasts Explosive Growth in Global Communications Over the Next Five Years

Financial: Ameritech Annual Report Highlights European Expansion, Forecasts Explosive Growth in Global Communications Over the Next Five Years – Company Business and Marketing

In its 1998 annual report, released today in print and on the Internet, Ameritech forecasts that the global communications market will expand 60 percent over the next five years — from $1.2 trillion in revenues in 1998 to nearly $2 trillion by 2003. Nearly two- thirds of that growth is projected to come from Europe and North America, where Ameritech’s operations are concentrated.

Ameritech’s annual report is mailed to more than 1 million shareowners, and it is available on the World Wide Web at www.ameritech.com/investor.

To capitalize on the communications industry’s growth opportunities, Ameritech has expanded in key growth areas for the future — including voice, data, wireless and security services — and it has built an extensive portfolio of investments in Europe. With major strategic partnerships in the national communications companies Belgacom of Belgium, Tele Danmark of Denmark and MATAV of Hungary, Ameritech is the largest foreign investor in European telecommunications and has interests in 15 countries.

During 1998, more than one-fourth of Ameritech’s earnings growth came from its European investments. To highlight these contributions, for the first time Ameritech’s annual report includes detailed pro rata financial results for its European investments. Plus, the Internet version of the report for the first time presents Financial Highlights and the Chairman’s Letter in five European languages: Danish, Dutch, French, German and Hungarian.

Ameritech’s annual report highlights progress in a number of areas. In 1998, the company achieved:

* a total return of 61 percent, the best one-year return in the company’s history, and created for its shareowners more than $25 billion in market value.

* its sixth consecutive year of double-digit profit growth before one- time items, the longest sustained double-digit growth record among major U.S. communications companies.

* a 65 percent increase in the estimated value of its European investments to more than $10 billion.

* the best financial results in the history of its U.S. wireless business with a 35 percent annual growth in operating cash flow.

* 32 percent growth in revenues from data communications, which advanced to $1.7 billion.

Ameritech’s 1998 annual report includes a variety of features that provide investors extra value. For example, it includes a glossary of telecommunications and financial terms, and it uses plain English.

In addition to an online version of its annual report, Ameritech gives shareowners the option of a completely paperless, Internet alternative for requesting and receiving annual meeting materials and for proxy voting. The Internet option is available to both registered and “street name” shareowners — those whose shares are held on their behalf by brokers and banks.

Ameritech’s annual reports are among the world’s most honored. For four consecutive years — 1994 through 1997 — Ameritech’s annual reports have been named the best in the world by annual report expert Sid Cato and Chief Executive magazine. The report has twice won first-place honors in the annual Creativity in Public Relations Awards (CIPRA) and last year was named “best in industry” by the National Association of Investors Corporation (NAIC) Nicholson Awards.

Ameritech serves millions of customers in 50 states and 40 countries. Ameritech provides a full range of communications services including local and long-distance telephone and data, cellular, paging, security, cable TV, Internet and more. One of the world’s 100 largest companies, Ameritech (www.ameritech.com) has 70,500 employees, 1 million shareowners and more than $30 billion in assets.

COPYRIGHT 1999 EDGE Publishing

COPYRIGHT 2000 Gale Group