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WorldCom launches new marketing campaign featuring basketball superstar Michael Jordan.

JACKSON, Miss.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--April 25, 1996--LDDS WorldCom, one of the country's largest and fastest growing long distance telephone companies, announced today its first national marketing campaign featuring basketball superstar Michael Jordan.

Positioning WorldCom as a major competitor in the hotly-contested, newly-deregulated telecommunications industry, the campaign breaks on Saturday, April 27, during the NBA playoffs.

Headquartered in Jackson, LDDS WorldCom currently holds the fourth largest share of the $64 billion long distance market in the U.S. In business since 1983, WorldCom has merged with more than two dozen competitors in recent years to provide service throughout the United States and in more than 240 countries. Sales in 1995 exceeded $3.6 billion.

The campaign will increase awareness among the buying public and demonstrate that WorldCom is a full-fledged long distance competitor, differentiated by personalized service and customer-driven products.

"Michael is recognized as someone who understands teamwork and knows what it takes to win in business," said Bernard J. Ebbers, president and chief executive officer of LDDS WorldCom. "This campaign is just one example of how our partnership with Michael will help WorldCom continue to rise to the top of this rapidly-changing industry."

In the television spots, Jordan is announced at a press conference as the spokesperson "who will deliver the LDDS WorldCom message to millions of people." When Jordan asks the WorldCom team when the commercial will be filmed, they laugh uncomfortably, realizing that no one fully explained his role to him.

The next scene shows Jordan seated at an impressive desk, surrounded by phone books. He is calling every individual and business -- one at a time -- to tell them about WorldCom's services.

National network television, the primary vehicle for launching the campaign, is supported by cable, print and direct marketing. Ads feature the new tagline "Service that's one-on-one," WorldCom's Internet address and the toll-free number, 1-800-JUMP 423. Michael Jordan prepaid calling cards are also promoted.

The campaign was created by Bethesda, Md.-based Earle Palmer Brown.

WorldCom Inc. offers domestic and international voice, data and video services to business customers, other carriers and the residential market. The company operates a nationwide digital fiber-optic network and has worldwide capacity. Common shares of WorldCom Inc. trade on the Nasdaq National Market under the symbol WCOM.

CONTACT: WorldCom Inc.

Katie Stephan, 301/657-6009

Gail Blount, 407/750-2649
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Copyright 1996, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

 
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Apr 24, 1996
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