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BEN AND JERRY'S ADDS NEW FLAVOR TO COMMUNICATIONS WITH THE INSTALLATION OF VIDEOCONFERENCING SYSTEMS FROM USTELECENTERS

BEN AND JERRY'S ADDS NEW FLAVOR TO COMMUNICATIONS WITH THE INSTALLATION
 OF VIDEOCONFERENCING SYSTEMS FROM USTELECENTERS
 BOSTON, Sept. 14, -- USTeleCenters, the Boston-based telecommunications systems designer and integrator, today announced the sale and installation of videoconferencing systems to Ben & Jerry's Homemade Inc., a famous producer of superpremium ice cream.
 Nestled in the Green Mountains of Vermont, Ben & Jerry's is using the systems to facilitate communications between employees at two sites about two hours and one mountain apart. The systems allow the staff to communicate visually about issues such as innovative new ice cream flavors, how to best serve favorite social causes or operations management.
 "Videoconferencing is providing more opportunities for folks to meet and talk with each other face-to-face without having to travel," said Maureen Martin, Ben & Jerry's communications coordinator. "We're really looking forward to using these systems during our notorious Vermont winter. Last year, we had to cancel some meetings, because it was just too icy to drive," Martin said.
 USTeleCenters recently installed PictureTel System 4000(a) videoconferencing systems at Ben & Jerry's headquarters in Waterbury, Vt., and in a manufacturing facility in North Springfield, Vt. The systems were primarily purchased to support communications between nine total quality management teams, each with 10 to 15 members who discuss issues ranging from safety and orientation to manufacturing techniques.
 Previously team members traveled regularly between the sites. Now, on alternate weeks, they videoconference to cut down on travel time, while doing their part to reduce automobile contaminants. In addition, the human resources staff videoconference frequently to discuss job openings and employee issues. The company bulletin boards contain information about the systems' user-friendliness and promote their use for spontaneous communication.
 Brian Bogosian, president and chief operating officer of USTeleCenters, said, "Quality and creativity have been a cornerstone of Ben & Jerry's in terms of its ice cream, its marketing and its corporate culture. USTeleCenters is pleased to be able to support this quality and creativity with this burgeoning communications medium videoconferencing."
 USTeleCenters trained Ben & Jerry's employees on the PictureTel systems and installed them in two conference rooms, which are decorated with brightly colored Ben and Jerry's posters. The systems, connected via a T1 line, include 32" monitors, remote controlled cameras that focus on the people, and auxiliary cameras that zoom in on white boards frequently used in meetings.
 "The PictureTel equipment is definitely the best and the most economical videoconferencing system around, a rare combination. And, our relationship with USTeleCenters has been terrific. I have a great deal of confidence in working with them and won't hesitate to call them about anything," Martin said.
 Martin said the company is wiring other conference rooms so the roll-about videoconferencing systems can be moved as needed. Also, she said, additional PictureTel systems might be purchased in the future to expand the use of videoconferencing to other Ben & Jerry's sites.
 Ben and Jerry's Homemade Inc., a Vermont-based company, produces superpremium ice cream and frozen yogurt and ice cream novelties using Vermont dairy products and high-quality natural ingredients. Ben & Jerry's products are distributed in 46 states and the company has 89 franchised scoop shops in 18 states and three company-owned stores.
 USTeleCenters is the premier telecommunications systems integrator in New England, bringing leading-edge system engineering and design, network products, videoconferencing and voice processing systems to businesses nationwide.
 Founded in 1986 and headquartered in Boston with a location in Hartford, Conn., USTeleCenters offers customers a strategic, single- supplier approach in providing value-added telecommunications products, services, strategies and support.
 -0- 9/14/92
 /CONTACT: Maureen Martin, of Ben and Jerry's, 802-244-6957, Christine Fitzmaurice, USTeleCenters 617-439-9911, or Amy Novakoff Rourke & Company, 617-267-0042/ CO: Ben and Jerry's; US Telecenters ST: Massachusetts, Vermont IN: SU:


TM -- NE017 -- 9060 09/14/92 10:51 EDT
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Date:Sep 14, 1992
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