WorldCom shares rise amid optimism over bid for MCI

October 03, 1997|By BLOOMBERG NEWS

JACKSON, Miss. -- WorldCom Inc. shares yesterday surged more than 9 percent amid optimism that the company's $33.88 billion bid for MCI Communications Corp. will succeed, making WorldCom a telecommunications powerhouse.

WorldCom shares jumped $3.50, or 9.2 percent, to a record high $37.88. MCI shares climbed $1.3125 to close at $36.625. Buying MCI would make little-known WorldCom the No. 2 U.S. long-distance provider with a quarter of the $70-billion-a-year market and a big chunk of the world's mushrooming Internet traffic.

WorldCom also could expand its global reach through MCI's partnership with British Telecommunications Plc, which has a competing agreement to buy MCI for about $10 less a share. "There's no one in the world who wouldn't want to trade in a pig for a stallion," said William Vogel, an analyst at Montgomery Securities.

Neither British Telecommunications, which already owns 20 percent of MCI, nor MCI said how it plans to respond to Wednesday's offer, the largest ever in the United States. WorldCom's bid totals $41.50 a share in stock and the company would assume $4.5 billion of MCI's debt.

Pub Date: 10/03/97

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