Prodigy Awaits Outcome of Talks

Prodigy Communications Corp. Tuesday asked its shareholders to defer a decision on whether or not to accept a tender offer by SBC Communications Inc. for the 70.5 million Prodigy Class A common stock shares it does not already own.

On Monday, SBC engaged in talks with the Prodigy board’s Independent Directors Committee, and hinted that it may raise its tender offer from $5.45 a share ($348 million) to as much as $6.25 a share ($440.6 million).

The possible raise in the bid price followed statements by several large shareholders that the unsolicited bid was too low. They noted that Prodigy shares were currently trading at $6.20. The price closed at $6.28 Monday.

When SBC first made its bid, Prodigy officials said they would recommend which way shareholders should vote by Oct. 16. But the company said Tuesday that because talks between the Independent Directors Committee and SBC representatives are ongoing, it is unable to offer a recommendation until the results of the discussions are known.

“The committee has reported that it is unable to take a position at this time in light of the pending discussions,” Prodigy said in a statement.

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