Vallance recounts WorldCom war stories
From 'mug' to 'smug'
When it comes to the WorldCom scandal, let's face it, most news is bad news.
But there is the odd exception, giving rise to some hope at least that corporate clouds do have sliver linings.
For while the authorities are crawling all over WorldCom, BT is counting its blessings.
The Sunday Herald reports that Sir Iain Vallance, the former (heavily criticised) chairman of BT, persuaded execs at the UK telco to cash in £5bn ($7bn) of MCI stock after WorldCom beat BT in the race to buy US carrier in 1997.
WorldCom (now ex) chief exec Bernie Ebbers reportedly told Vallance that he "was a mug to be getting out" bragging that the stock would top $100 a share.
Ebbers told Vallance: "You will live to regret it and your name will be mud."
If Vallance's name is mud, then Ebbers' name must be something really brown, gut-churning and horribly foul smelling.
And rather than being a mug, one suspects Vallance is now feeling rather smug at the way events have turned out. ®