AT&T, BT recycle Concert name for global venture

AT&T and British Telecommunications have confirmed what many observers had suspected all along -- that their new global venture will be called Concert, the same name now used by a wholly owned BT unit.

Concert had emerged as the name of choice among business customers, of which "more than three out four believed it best represented the promises our new business wants to convey," claimed the planned company's CEO, David Dorman.

The Concert name was most recently used by a wholly owned BT unit offering worldwide services, much like the planned new venture. Originally, however, it was the name of the now defunct Concert Communications Services joint venture between BT and its former partner, then called MCI Communications Corp.

The two companies in July 1998 first announced the planned Concert venture, which will be owned equally by the two parent companies. The venture's stated aim is to serve the global communications needs of multinational companies, carriers and ISPs (Internet service providers).

As recently as August, however, company officials denied reports that the venture, planned to launch in October, may be be held up by a review reportedly conducted by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation and US Department of Justice.

The European Union, meanwhile, already in March gave its approval for the venture.

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