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Long-Distance Phone DMer Merges With Lightyear

VarTec Telecom, a long-distance telephone service direct marketer, has merged with communications provider Lightyear Communications, Louisville, KY.

The merger will create a company with $1.5 billion in annual revenue, 2,100 employees in 23 cities and more than 6 million customers. Terms of the merger, which was announced late last month and will be completed in the second half of this year, were not disclosed.

Lightyear provides voice, data and Internet service to 300,000 business and residential customers in the United States. VarTec Telecom, Dallas, promotes dial-around long-distance service — in which customers dial a six-digit code from any phone before they dial the telephone number — through direct mail campaigns.

VarTec maintains five call centers to handle customer service and billing inquiries. It provides long-distance service in the United States, the United Kingdom and parts of Germany.

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