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MCI acquires Totality

Long-distance giant continues to acquire companies even as it prepares its mega merger with Verizon.

MCI isn't letting the pending merger with Verizon Communications stop it from expanding its business services through acquisitions.

The long-distance phone carrier announced Tuesday that it plans to buy Totality, a company that offers managed services. MCI plans to use Totality's assets to expand its Web hosting business.

Financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed. The transaction is expected to close within the next 45 days.

Since the company emerged from bankruptcy protection, MCI has been trying to distance itself from its former WorldCom business. Specifically, it has been investing in new services geared toward large business customers to help offset the decline in consumer long-distance revenues, which have been in steady decline for years. The latest purchase will help MCI expand its Web hosting business.

In July, MCI completed its acquisition of assets from Interactive Content Factory from TWI's interactive division, which is a subsidiary of IMG Worldwide. ICF is a software solution that helps provide Internet protocol-based media and entertainment services. In February, it completed the $105 million acquisition of NetSec, a privately held company that provides security services to business customers throughout the world.

These acquisitions come as MCI is merging with telephone giant Verizon. The merger--valued at $7.6 billion--is expected to be completed by the end of the year, pending government approvals.