03 May 2005 US telecoms provider Verizon looks to have won its long-running battle to acquire long distance operator MCI with an $8.5 billion bid, with rival Qwest finally throwing in the towel.
Qwest has decided to give up pursuit of MCI after its $9.9 billion offer was rejected in favour on the Verizon bid.
In a tersely worded statement Qwest said it could no longer justify attempting to acquire MCI: “It is no longer in the best interests of shareowners, customers and employees to continue in a process that seems to be permanently skewed against Qwest. Unfortunately, the latest in a string of decisions reconfirms what we have believed all along: that MCI never intended to negotiate in good faith with Qwest nor maximise shareowner value.”
But MCI have rebutted this, saying it’s the Qwest bid could have potentially lost it customers. “From the standpoint of risk versus reward, Verizon’s revised offer presents MCI with a stronger, superior choice,” said Nicholas deB Katzenbach, MCI’s chairman.
MCI – formerly known as WorldCom – is the second largest provider of long-distance telephony and telecommunications in the US.
The 11-week takeover tussle between Verizon and Qwest saw the price for MCI rise from ‘just’ $6.8 billion in February 2005.