01.04.1996Enterprise Tech

WorldCom, Inc. acquires stake in irish telecommunications company


JACKSON, Miss. (January 4, 1996) -- WorldCom, Inc. (Nasdaq/NM:WCOM), today announced it has acquired a 30 percent stake in TCL Telecom, a Dublin-based company specializing in the provision of international telecommunications services to companies based in Ireland. The transaction builds upon WorldCom, Inc.'s growing international presence in Europe, where it is a leader in providing voice, data and video services for multinational customers, said Stephen N. Carroll, president of WorldCom International. "Part of our European strategy includes investing in efficient, well-managed, independent companies to create a pan-European network," Carroll said.

David Hardwick,managing director of WorldCom UK, said customers both of TCL (TelAtlantic Corporation Limited) and WorldCom, Inc. will obtain many benefits from the new relationship. "Because of our commitment to providing first-class service for our customers, we looked carefully at the Irish market and had no hesitation in selecting TCL Telecom as our partner in Ireland," Hardwick said. "The partnership will be beneficial for both parties and will allow WorldCom, Inc. to route all of its global traffic into Ireland through TCL Telecom."

Sean Melly, founder and managing director of TCL Telecom, said the arrangement will help fuel the company's anticipated growth. "This unique strategic alliance with WorldCom, Inc. provides several advantages for TCL Telecom, including lower international rates for our customers, superior call quality and early introduction of the latest telecommunications services," Melly said. "With the WorldCom, Inc. investment, TCL Telecom will be able to accelerate the expansion and upgrade of its switching centers and network throughout Ireland. Additionally, and perhaps most importantly, this transaction affords TCL Telecom the combined benefits of owning and controlling its own technical infrastructure while also having the ability to utilize WorldCom, Inc.'s extensive worldwide network."

TCL Telecom was established in 1994 and already serves about 300 corporate customers through its offices in Dublin, Cork and Limerick. The company plans to increase its customer base to 1,000 during 1996 and expand its work force from about 20 to 50 during the year, Melly said. In connection with the expansion plans, Melly announced the appointment of John Sharpe as sales director. Sharpe has more than a decade of network services experience with GPT Communications Systems, Cable and Wireless (Ireland) and Sprint International (UK) Limited. One of the four largest long distance telecommunications companies in the United States, WorldCom, Inc. offers domestic and international voice, data and video products and services to business customers, other carriers and the residential market. The company operates a nationwide digital fiber optic network and has worldwide network capacity.

The common shares of WorldCom, Inc. trade on The Nasdaq Stock Market under the symbol WCOM.