C&W sparks rumors it might 'unmerge'

British telecom Cable & Wireless fueled rumors it would "unmerge" after its annual profits slipped 5.7 percent from a year ago to $321 million and revenues fell to $6.17 billion, off 5.8 percent for the year.

After the 2006 split of the company into two independent units--one focused on Europe, the U.S. and Asia, and the second on other international markets--analysts have been expecting a full split. This might be the year.

"We will look at all options," Finance Director Tony Rice said, adding that they could include a breakup, the sale of some of the company's voice, Internet and wireless networking service businesses or borrowing money to return capital to shareholders.

C&W trimmed 9 percent of its worldwide workforce last year to about 5,000 workers.

For more:
- Check out the AP story in The State
- Or, Cable & Wireless' press center for full results