Qwest readies new offer for MCI

Qwest is expected to take another shot at buying MCI sometime this week.

Marguerite Reardon Former senior reporter
Marguerite Reardon started as a CNET News reporter in 2004, covering cellphone services, broadband, citywide Wi-Fi, the Net neutrality debate and the consolidation of the phone companies.
Marguerite Reardon
Qwest Communications International is expected to make a revised offer for long-distance phone company MCI sometime this week, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal.

Last week, Qwest's CEO sent a letter to MCI's board of directors, stating that his company was preparing another offer. Qwest also made details of its original $8 billion offer public in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Even though Qwest's offer was considerably higher than Verizon Communications' $6.75 billion bid, MCI accepted Verizon's offer.

In the letter to the MCI board of directors, Qwest complained that it was not treated fairly in the bidding process. Four of MCI's largest investors have publicly expressed their concern that the board opted for the lower bid. And some smaller investors have filed lawsuits against the board of directors in an effort to stop the deal.

But analysts argue that regardless of the fact that Qwest's offer was higher, Verizon is a better candidate for the acquisition because it is financially stronger.

"Investors always want to get more money for a deal," said Wayne Homren, an analyst at investment firm Parker/Hunter. "But the board has to weigh a number of different factors. They've already made their decision, so I don't know how much more Qwest could offer to make a difference."

Verizon and MCI declined to comment.