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C and W-led IDC, DDI, TTNet to form telecom alliance.

TOKYO, Aug. 31 Kyodo

International Digital Communications Inc. (IDC), a telecom carrier controlled by Britain's Cable and Wireless PLC (C and W), said Tuesday it is close to disclosing a cooperative arrangement with two other major players in Japan's telecom market.

IDC President Simon Cunningham, an industrialist sent in by C and W to head IDC, told a news conference that IDC is drawing near to concluding a deal with DDI Corp. and Tokyo Telecommunication Network Co. (TTNet)

IDC has a 20% share of Japan's international telecom market. DDI is a domestic long-distance call operator and TTNet has an extensive intracity telecom infrastructure in a large area within the Kanto region.

IDC's attempt to bring DDI and TTNet into its fold appears to be aimed at establishing a powerful alliance capable of rivaling Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp. (NTT), industry analysts said.

Cunningham stopped short of disclosing specifics of IDC's negotiations with the two telecom players whose cooperation it covets.

But he suggested the talks are partly aimed at shaving large costs so as to offer its subscribers cheaper access to its international telecom services. Without the alliance, IDC would have to rely more heavily on NTT's huge domestic phone infrastructure and therefore pay relatively more in the way of interconnection fees.

IDC is not able to reach Japanese subscribers without first going through NTT's extensive intracity telephone infrastructure. Yet cooperation from DDI and TTNet would provide it with cheaper alternative routes.

On June 16, C and W clinched a 97.69% equity stake in IDC after a three-month takeover battle with NTT.

C and W persuaded 134 of IDC's 141 shareholders to sell their shares at 110,577 yen per share. The deal has made C and W the first foreign telecom company to put a Japanese telecom carrier under its control.
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Comment:C and W-led IDC, DDI, TTNet to form telecom alliance.
Publication:NTT Topics
Geographic Code:9JAPA
Date:Sep 6, 1999
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