GTE to sell government group

Telecommunications vendor GTE Corp. announced today it plans to sell off its Government Systems subsidiary as part of a corporate effort to refocus its business lines.

The Government Systems group last year produced revenues of $1.5 billion—about one-twentieth of the corporation's overall revenues. A spokesman for the group said the group has been successful but does not fit into the strategy outlined by corporate leaders last April.

"GTE announced last spring it would refocus on essential business lines," the spokesman said. "The Government Systems group is not part of that vision." The spokesman for the Government Systems group said the sale has nothing to do with the company's proposed merger with Bell Atlantic.

He said GTE officials hope to "find a buyer who will keep most of the employees," whom they view as the group's primary asset.

The group last year was awarded a $110 million contract for the Defense Department's Information Management and Telecommunications upgrade project and a $115 million Air Force contract for the Operations Planning System. But it also suffered under the Justice Department's decision in March to drastically scale back its $500 million contract for the Justice Consolidated Office Network and has reported somewhat sluggish sales on its $300 million Federal Wireless Telecommunications Services contract with the General Services Administration.

The spokesman added that the move will not affect performance on existing contracts. "We are committed to fulfilling the contracts and performing to the same standards we have in the past," he said.

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