Qwest Communications International announced Tuesday that it filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission to make an offer of $2.5 billion in debt and equity. The local and long-distance telecom carrier added that it will offer no more than $1.25 billion as stock or as bonds that can be redeemed for stock. The type of stock or the timing of the proposed offering was not disclosed, but the company said it depends on market conditions and clearance of the offering from the SEC.
Qwest said last week that it intends to reduce its debt by about $1.5 to $2 billion, and CEO Joe Nacchio said on a conference call Tuesday that the equity portion of the offering should give the company about $1 billion toward that goal. Nacchio said that Qwest is also considering the sale of non-core assets like its access lines, wireless holdings and its directory business to reduce debt. Moody's Investor Service put Qwest debt on review for a possible downgrade in January. Qwest has about $1.2 billion in long-term debt that will mature in 2002.