Multimillion dollar telecommunications mergers are now turning up at a rate of about one a week, the latest being Los Angeles, California-based Century Telephone Enterprises Inc’s acquisition of Pacific Telecom Inc for $2.2bn. The move should make Century the 12th largest US local exchange telephone company and the 10th largest cellular company, with a combined revenues of around $1.4bn. The deal comes out of the larger $5.8bn purchase on Friday of UK electricity company the Energy Group Plc by Pacific Telecom’s parent, Pacificorp, which sold off its telecommunications arm to part-fund its own purchase. But Pacific Telecom, which has revenues of around $580m and debts of $700m including $232m in pending acquisitions, has been on the block for some time. In an earlier deal announced last April, Century had already agreed to acquire most of Pacific’s cellular holdings, an agreement superceded by the new one. Century will pay Pacificorp $1.523bn in cash and assume the debt. It expects the transaction to be complete by the first quarter of 1998, subject to public service commission approvals. Century president and chief executive officer Glen Post said the deal would help Century achieve its vision of becoming the leading provider of integrated communication services to rural America, including internet access, high-speed data and enhanced services. Century has also been aggressively moving into the PCS mobile phone business. Pacificorp, Portland, Oregon, generates and sells electricity to a million customers in seven states.