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ICO wins court approval for McCaw's $150m cash injection

Merger with Teledesic now even closer

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Our prediction of a Teledesic/ICO Global Communications merger appears to be coming true. The US bankruptcy court -- along with a pair of the same in Bermuda and the Cayman Islands; so you see where the money will end up -- approved Teledesic chairman Craig McCaw's plan to pump first $150 million into the much-troubled satellite mobile phone company, and then lead a finance drive to find up to $2.1 billion. And who reported this interesting titbit? Why, none other than Teledesic under a Teledesic/ICO banner. The financing and cash injection is subject amongst other things to a "confirmation and consummation of a reorganisation plan" -- in other words, to McCaw's elevation to the chairmanship of ICO. Given that ICO is now in the same business as Teledesic -- it wants to provide high bandwidth Net access through its still-to-be-launched satellite network rather than an Iridium-style mobile phone service -- and will soon have the same chairman (and possibly other members of the executive team), merging the two operations is the obvious next move. Like Iridium, ICO filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last August. While its rival struggles to persuade its investors to allow it to restructure, ICO revealed a plan to adopt Teledesic's business model and, before McCaw's input, a further round of financing. ® Register Remarkable Coincidences No. 4001 McCaw's fellow 'name' investor in Teledesic is Bill Gates. Gates' Microsoft yesterday came to an agreement with one Richard Kerstein over the ownership of the Windows2000.com domain name. And who did Kerstein once work for? Why, McCaw Cellular, as CFO...

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