Home » OPINION » Columns » The View from Here

The View from Here

CLINTON — It was the deal that just quite isn’t. WorldCom’s $129-billion acquisition of Sprint couldn’t clear the anti-trust, government-regulatory, consumer-advocacy hurdles thrown up since the announcement of the deal months ago.

The news came to me via an e-mail bulletin from a Web site: one paragraph announcement from the companies. Short, simple, not so sweet if you were pulling for the very big telecommunications deal which would have further thrust the Mississippi-based WorldCom into a role as one of the giants in the New Economy.

But, goin’ global just didn’t quite make it — globally: “WorldCom and Sprint announced today that, in light of the announcement by the U.S. Department of Justice that it had filed suit to block their proposed merger, they have withdrawn their proposed undertakings and merger notification previously filed with the European Commission. If, in the future, the parties decide to proceed with the merger, they will make such notifications as are appropriate under European merger laws.”

The announcement, which wasn’t a surprise to many folks, had been building at a rapid pace the last few weeks. From The Clarion-Ledger to The Washington Post to the BBC, intense media scrutiny of the historic — and increasingly controversial — deal dominated business coverage in newspapers, Web sites and TV.

It began with the European Union’s competition commissioner telling Reuters June 27 that he would recommend the EU oppose the merger proposal.

A day later in last Tuesday’s Washington Post, sources close to the deal asserted that the companies would withdraw the proposal rather than face EU rejection.

And so it went. The “knowledgeable, unnamed sources” were right.

Don’t plan on the coverage— or the speculation — ending any time too soon. Whatever happens to WorldCom and Sprint, whether they merge or not, there is no doubt that both companies will play important roles in the hyper-fast future of business.

And that’s the speed we’re moving at these days. Dot-com this, DSL that. Convergence. Community. Content. Connection. Whatever business you happen to be in — paper or plastics, widgets or Web sites — you’re working that 24/7 clich


… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.

If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.

Click for more info

About Staff Writer

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *