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Birch Communications Receives Financing from CoBank

CoBank joins Birch's Senior Secured Credit syndicate group with a $12 million commitment

ATLANTA, Feb. 11, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Birch Communications, Inc., a leading IP-based telecom and managed services provider to small- and medium-sized businesses, announced today that CoBank is now a syndicated lender in Birch's Senior Secured Credit Facility.  CoBank's commitment of $12 million will increase the capacity of the Company's Senior Credit Facility and provides additional funding capacity for Birch to continue to pursue accretive acquisitions.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110606/CG14010LOGO)

"We are very pleased to begin a partnership with CoBank," noted Edward James, Birch's chief financial officer.  "We see this support as an affirmation of our business model, leadership team and continued growth strategy.  We're looking forward to an exciting 2013 as we continue to take advantage of our firm financial footing and continue to grow our business."

CoBank has over $90 billion in assets and is a leading provider of credit to agribusiness and the nation's rural power, water and communications industries. "We appreciate our new partnership with Birch and commend them for the leadership position they have built in the competitive telecom sector," said Kevin Oliver, CoBank vice president.  "Birch's IP-Network expansion and numerous acquisitions have enhanced communications service throughout their service footprint, including many of the communities our bank is chartered to serve.  We congratulate Birch on their continued growth and look forward to additional opportunities in the future."

"Our Senior Secured Credit Facility Syndication Group has added a key member with CoBank," said Vincent M. Oddo, Birch's president and chief executive officer. "The progress in our financing initiatives underscores the fact that the financial markets continue to be confident in Birch's fundamental stability and growth potential.  For those reasons and more we are very pleased to call CoBank our new financing partner."

About Birch Communications
Headquartered in Atlanta, Ga., Birch Communications provides managed communications and information technology services to a target market of small- and medium-sized businesses in select metropolitan areas within 38 states across the United States.  Birch services include local and long distance voice, broadband Internet access, T1, PRI, bonded T1, mobile voice and data, e-mail, voicemail, prepaid, and many other communications and information technology services.  Birch voice and data services are, in most cases, delivered using Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology on the company's secure IP-Network rather than over the public Internet. 

According to Inc. 500|5000 magazine in its 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and 2004 rankings, Birch was one of the fastest-growing private companies in the United States.  In 2010, Birch was also named the 7th fastest growing private business in Atlanta, and in 2011 as one of the Top 100 Private Companies in Atlanta, by the Atlanta Business Chronicle.  Please visit www.birch.com for more information.

About CoBank
CoBank is a $90 billion cooperative bank serving vital industries across rural America. The bank provides loans, leases, export financing and other financial services to agribusinesses and rural power, water and communications providers in all 50 states. The bank also provides wholesale loans and other financial services to affiliated Farm Credit associations serving more than 70,000 farmers, ranchers and other rural borrowers in 23 states around the country.

CoBank is a member of the Farm Credit System, a nationwide network of banks and retail lending associations chartered to support the borrowing needs of U.S. agriculture and the nation's rural economy. Headquartered outside Denver, Colorado, CoBank serves customers from regional banking centers across the U.S. and also maintains an international representative office in Singapore.

For more information about CoBank, visit the bank's web site at www.cobank.com.

SOURCE Birch Communications, Inc.

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