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Seidenberg: going the distance with GTE
01 September 1999
Bell Atlantic appears to be on the verge of obtaining approval from the FCC to offer long-distance services and merge with GTE. Projected merger synergies and its ability to offer new services, such as long distance and data, including DSL, are key to the operator's growth. Ivan Seidenberg, Bell Atlantic's chairman and CEO, talks to Mark Holmes about these issues.
Bell Atlantic is one of the largest telcos in the US. After the
proposed merger with GTE, it would become one of the top four
global players. The merged company would have estimated pro forma
revenues of over $63 billion.
Bell Atlantic also hopes to gain approval from the Federal
Communications Commission (FCC) to offer long-distance services at
the end of this year. So far, however, the FCC has rejected all
RBOC applications, claiming that the RBOCs have failed to open up
their markets to competition. The situation seems to be changing.
The operator hopes to close its merger with GTE within the next
nine months. Once these two major obstacles have been overcome,
Bell Atlantic will face other challenges to maintain strong
earnings growth, as Simon Flannery, telecoms equity analyst at
Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, explains: "I think that they have to
close the merger which is tied to long distance, but there...
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