BIZ WATCH

MCI'S COLLECT CALL FROM LONDON

Although MCI has thrived on its status as underdog to mammoth AT&T, that shoe may no longer fit. MCI shook up the telecommunications industry last week--and just about everyone else too--by acknowledging it was in talks to merge with giant British Telecom. The deal, expected to be announced over this past weekend, is likely to be worth about $22 billion.

The companies are not strangers. BT (1995 revenues: $22 billion) bought a 20% stake in MCI (1995 revenues: $15.3 billion) for $4.3 billion in 1994 and earlier this year said the two would combine their Internet...

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