Interoute Attains Gold Status in Microsoft Partner Program: Interoute Further Distinguishes Itself by Earning a Microsoft Competency in Networking Infrastructure Solutions and Advanced Infrastructure solutions

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Interoute, owner of Europe's most advanced next-generation voice and data network, today announced it has attained Gold Certified Partner status in the Microsoft Partner Program. In addition, the company has received a competency in Networking Infrastructure Solutions, Advanced Infrastructure solutions and Information Worker Solution, recognising Interoute's expertise and impact in the technology marketplace.

We are extremely pleased to have attained Gold Certified Partner status in the Microsoft Partner Program. It gives us a great position in the channel for some of our latest offerings. New product launches such as Virtual Hosting and Interoute One are based heavily on Microsoft technology so it's gratifying to be recognised with this accreditation

    As a Gold Certified Partner, Interoute has demonstrated expertise with Microsoft technologies and proven ability to meet customers' needs. Microsoft Gold Certified Partners receive a rich set of benefits, including access, training and support, giving them a competitive advantage in the channel.

Interoute is a next generation network provider with over 12,000 customers in sectors ranging from aerospace to finance to retail, as well as every major European telecoms incumbent, and the major operators of North America, East and South Asia. Recent developments in the areas of managed services and unified communications have seen the launch of Interoute's Virtual Hosting platform and the unified communications solution, Interoute One, which can federate all users of the Microsoft Live Communications Server.

"We are extremely pleased to have attained Gold Certified Partner status in the Microsoft Partner Program. It gives us a great position in the channel for some of our latest offerings. New product launches such as Virtual Hosting and Interoute One are based heavily on Microsoft technology so it's gratifying to be recognised with this accreditation," said Jim Kinsella, Chairman and CEO at Interoute. "This certification is another step in the evolution Interoute is driving across all of its managed services and unified communications products."

"Our industry partners allow us to deliver high-quality solutions and applications to our customers. And we're always looking at ways to improve our relationships," said Paul Flessner, senior vice president of the Server Applications at Microsoft Corp. "Solutions competencies enable Microsoft to provide resources and training to partners seeking to meet, and even surpass, customer needs. The competencies also provide industry partners with a way to showcase their expertise to customers that depend on them for services, such as building critical infrastructure including storage and hosting solutions."

As one of the requirements for attaining Gold Certified Partner status, Interoute had to declare a Microsoft Competency. Microsoft Competencies are designed to help differentiate a partner's capabilities with specific Microsoft technologies to customers looking for a particular type of solution. Each competency has a unique set of requirements and benefits, formulated to accurately represent the specific skills and services that partners bring to the technology industry.

About the Microsoft Partner Program

Microsoft Gold Certified Partners enrolled in the Networking Infrastructure Solutions Competency have proved their expertise in implementing technology solutions based on either the Microsoft Windows Server 2003 or Windows 2000 Server operating system, with a particular focus on Microsoft Small Business Server 2000 and Windows Small Business Server 2003. These implementations may include crafting solutions that connect Windows-based servers, PC locations and the Internet; installing a server farm; or building a small-business Windows Server stand-alone solution that includes file and print capabilities.

The Advanced Infrastructure Solutions Competency is designed for partners with proven expertise in designing and/or implementing complex infrastructure solutions such as Active Directory(R)- and Microsoft Host Integration Server-based design and deployment solutions, and Microsoft Exchange Server migration or deployment solutions. Because customers are increasingly asking to do more with less, partners with the Advanced Infrastructure Solutions Competency can identify their unique skill in helping customers' access management solutions, improve operational efficiency and reduce security risks. Specialisations within the competency are Active Directory and Identity Management, Exchange Migration and Deployment, Hosting Solutions, System Management and Storage Solutions.

The Information Worker Solution plays a key role in the mission to drive productivity, creating a single business community and simplifying how people work together. Helping to streamline business processes by always being connected using a single unified communications tool. It enables users of Microsoft Live Communication Server to federate to their customers and suppliers using PSTN interconnection to solutions

The Microsoft Partner Program was launched in October 2003 and represents Microsoft's ongoing commitment to the success of partners worldwide. The program offers a single, integrated partnering framework that recognises partner expertise, rewards the total impact that partners have in the technology marketplace, and delivers more value to help partners' businesses be successful.

About Interoute

Interoute is the owner operator of Europe's most advanced and densely connected voice and data network, encompassing over 54,000 kms of lit fibre. Its full-service next generation network serves more than 12,000 customers across a broad range of sectors from finance to retail and every major European incumbent, as well as the major operators of North America, East and South Asia, governments, universities and research agencies. These organisations find Interoute the ideal partner for hosting content, providing wholesale transit services, corporate access or creating new services. With established operations throughout mainland Europe, North America and Dubai Interoute also owns and operates dense city networks throughout Europe's major business centres. More than EUR 1 billion in e-commerce transactions flows through its data centres each day, making Interoute a key part of Europe's Digital Supply Chain. http://www.interoute.com

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