Chapter 11 induces Williams to call on MWW's PR counsel

TULSA, OK: With Worldcom and Global Crossing causing the telecom sector to fall out of favor, Williams Communications has turned to The MWW Group to help restructure the business and rescue it from Chapter 11.

TULSA, OK: With Worldcom and Global Crossing causing the telecom sector to fall out of favor, Williams Communications has turned to The MWW Group to help restructure the business and rescue it from Chapter 11.

The account, estimated to be worth around $250,000, will see MWW help reorganize the Tulsa, OK-based data service company. The company's stock was downgraded by Standard & Poor's in April after it deferred payment of $91 million in interest due on about $1.7 billion of debt, according to a report in BusinessWeek.

That led the firm to seek Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection while it reorganizes operations. Williams, which is 100% publicly traded, also issued a statement last month saying it was cooperating with an investigation by the Oklahoma Department of Securities.

MWW won the account following a recommendation by the New York-based law firm Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue, which is working with Williams.

Williams' director of corporate communications Deborah Trevino said, "MWW is helping with message development and crisis management. The company has been in business for 15 years, and we are ready for some support to differentiate ourselves."

Michael Kempner, MWW CEO, said, "Lots of factors have materially changed the outlook for the sector. Debt and operations couldn't be sustained. There's a multi-stakeholder approach for employees, retirees and industry, and we have to create a stakeholder plan."

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