What Is Level 3 Communications?

Headquartered in Broomfield, Colorado, Level 3 Communications is an international public company specializing in telecommunications and Internet services. Level 3 has European headquarters in London, England, and Latin American headquarters in Buenos Aires, Argentina. It employs about 13,500 people.

Operations and Services

Level 3 offers specialized services to its clients, which include businesses, government agencies and wholesale distributors. Among its offerings are transoceanic services that connect North America with Europe and Latin America.

The company provides several services:

  • Wavelength services for businesses and organizations that manage their networks internally.
  • Network management and design, installation and continued monitoring of sophisticated systems.
  • High-speed connections to multiple networks, including the public telephone network, the Internet and competitors' networks.
  • Storage centers for clients' servers and cloud hosting.

Global Reach

Level 3 provides services in Africa, the Asian Pacific, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and North America. For example, it provides services throughout Africa and across the Middle East from its Internet protocol gateway in Marseilles, France. These services include voice, data and video connections.

Stock Overview

Level 3's stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol LVLT, with a $19.8 billion market cap as of May 2015. The company reported $300 million in net income on $7.2 billion in sales for the third quarter of 2014, according to Morningstar.

On May 20, 2015, Bloomberg's Businessweek listed the top performing stocks for the 30 days prior in the telecommunications services industry. Level 3 Communications was listed as fourth, behind Bangladesh Submarine Cable Co. Ltd., Alaska Comm Systems Group and Premiere Global Services Inc.

Competitor Relationships

In its 2014 annual 10-K report filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Level 3 listed its competitors in each service area. The major North American competitors in multiple areas were identified as CenturyLink and the two telecom giants AT&T and Verizon. Sean Buckley, senior editor of FierceWireless, called Level 3 a "threat" to AT&T and Verizon in telecom business services because it continues to garner market share in this area of the telecom industry, a space previously dominated by the two giant companies.

On May 12, 2015, RCR Wireless reported that AT&T and Verizon had both signed contracts with Level 3 to join their mobile networks with Level 3's fiber networks. Anthony Christie, Level 3 CMO, was quoted as saying these joint ventures would benefit "customers for years to come."