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US West sells $1.15 billion in Global Crossing stock

Taking advantage of a rise in the value of Global Crossing's stock, US West sells 24 million shares of the telecommunications firm.

US West today said it has sold 65 percent of its stake in telecommunications firm Global Crossing for about $1.15 billion.

Taking advantage of a rise in the value of Global Crossing's stock--it has gained more than 80 percent in the past few months--Denver-based US West said it sold 24 million shares of the telecommunications firm.

The sale will cut US West's fourth-quarter earnings by about 44 cents per share, the company said in a statement. US West had been expected to earn 78 cents per share, according to analysts polled by First Call.

The transaction allows US West to gain immediate financial proceeds as well as to participate in a significant portion of the appreciation potential of Global Crossing's stock, the company said.

In July, US West was acquired by long-distance carrier Qwest Communications after a bidding war with Global Crossing and Frontier Communications.

Qwest was engaged in a takeover battle with Global Crossing for nearly a month. The two companies fought for the right to acquire both US West and Frontier, a long distance voice and Web hosting firm. The companies instead reached a mutual agreement, in which Qwest bought US West and Global Crossing retained its original $11 billion agreement to purchase Frontier.