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GCI: ALASKAN TELECOMMUNICATIONS FIRM EXTENDS TRANSPONDER LEASE AGREEMENT ON HUGHES' SBS 5

 LOS ANGELES, June 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Hughes Communications Inc. (HCI) and Anchorage, Alaska-based General Communications Inc. (NASDAQ: GNCMA) announced today an agreement to extend GCI's long-term lease of a Hughes SBS 5 transponder through the satellite's end-of-life, estimated to occur in late 1999.
 The agreement guarantees GCI's long-term access to high-power Ku-band satellite capacity, which enables the company to continue providing its complete "end-to-end" communication systems for customers throughout Alaska. Through GCI's Network Systems subsidiary, it offers integrated communications systems using private telephone lines, private very small aperture terminal (VSAT) networks, voice and data communications systems, and mainframe peripherals.
 "We're very pleased that GCI has extended its lease agreement on our SBS 5 satellite, which provides coverage for customers in Alaska, Hawaii and the Lower 48 states," said Carl Brown, vice president of Galaxy Satellite Services for HCI. "We've enjoyed a mutually rewarding relationship with GCI through the years, and this agreement permits us to further develop the market for communications networks in Alaska through the turn of the century," he added.
 According to Brad Spees, GCI Network Systems' director of marketing, the lease extension provides the company with an excellent complement to its extensive private line service offerings.
 "Alaska is a state where terrestrial communications are limited due to rugged terrain, sparse population and vast distances," said Spees. "This system allows us to reach areas of Alaska where communications might otherwise be nonexistent, such as oil field drilling rigs, mine sites and logging camps."
 GCI, founded in 1979, provides phone and data services to more than


100,000 customers. The company has 12 major earth stations throughout Alaska and Ku-band hubs in Anchorage and Seattle.
 Hughes Communications is the world's largest private commercial satellite operator. It owns and operates five C-band Galaxy spacecraft, the dual-payload Galaxy VII satellite and three Ku-band SBS satellites. In addition, Hughes Communications is building North America's first high-power direct-to-home entertainment distribution system, called DirecTv(TM).
 Hughes Communications is a unit of GM Hughes Electronics Corp. (GMHE). The earnings of GMHE, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Motors Corp.(NYSE: GM), are used to calculate the earnings per share of General Motors Class H Common Stock (NYSE: GMH).
 -0- 6/14/93
 /CONTACT: Jeffrey D. Torkelson, manager, Public Relations, of Hughes Communications, 310-607-4342; or Brad Spees, director of Marketing, of GCI Network Systems, 907-267-8100; or Linda Duck, manager, Marketing Communications, of General Communications, 907-265-5458/
 (GNCMA GM GMH)


CO: Hughes Communications Inc.; General Communications Inc.; General
 Motors Corp. ST: California, Alaska IN: TLS SU:


AL-SW -- SE013 -- 1879 06/14/93 19:25 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 14, 1993
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