Mercury Communications signed an agreement with AT&T in December 1986, which makes it the first alternative carrier for transatlantic switched traffic that AT&T has signed with outside North America. The deal, concluded last week, means that Mercury will receive as much traffic as it sends to AT&T. Mercury chief Gordon Owen describes it as the most significant move in Mercury’s history since its birth in 1982. Transatlantic traffic accounted for some 25% of Telecom’s UKP1,800m profit in 1986 and Mercury claims that its 1% share of that market has increased to 1.5% during the Telecom industrial dispute and sees it rising steadily.
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