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Alaska Communications Systems Announces Quarterly Cash Dividend

ANCHORAGE, Alaska--()--Alaska Communications (NASDAQ: ALSK) announced today that its board of directors has approved a fourth quarter dividend of $0.05 per share, payable on January 18, 2012 to shareholders of record as of December 30, 2011. On an annualized basis, this represents a dividend level of $0.20 per share compared to prior level of $0.86 per share, allowing the company to retain $29.8 million cash on an annualized basis.

“As previously noted, we anticipate reduced high cost support for wireline and wireless services as a result of Universal Service Fund reform adopted by the Federal Communications Commission and the entry of a fourth competitor in the Alaska wireless market. We believe that increasing our cash position is a prudent policy. This action will provide a continuing dividend for our shareholders, while the company invests for the future and strengthens its balance sheet,” said Anand Vadapalli, Alaska Communications president and CEO.

"We see opportunities to strengthen our market position in the enterprise, small to medium business and consumer segments, through accelerated product offerings, continued network investments and enhanced customer service. We also seek to reduce our total debt to strengthen our balance sheet. By proactively managing our balance sheet and making these investments, we intend to create long-term value for our investors, customers, employees and the communities we serve. We look forward to communicating our long-term strategic plan at our year-end earnings call scheduled for March 1, 2012,” added Vadapalli.

About Alaska Communications

Headquartered in Anchorage, Alaska Communications (NASDAQ: ALSK) is a leading provider of high-speed wireless, mobile broadband, Internet, local, long-distance and advanced data solutions for businesses and consumers in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest. The Alaska Communications network includes the most advanced wireline and wireless data and voice networks and the most diverse undersea fiber optic system connecting Alaska to the contiguous United States. For more information, visit www.alaskacommunications.com or www.alsk.com.

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