Founded in 1988 by Dallas entrepreneur Kenny Troutt, Excel Communications was a long distance reseller. It began selling franchises using a multi-level marketing (MLM) business model, eventually selling over 200,000 of these franchises, or an average of 1 franchise for each 20 customers. In seven years, it became the fourth-largest long distance carrier in America and the youngest billion-dollar-annual company in history (8 years as compared to the second fastest growing, Microsoft, which took 15 years).
The Catalyst Group in Chicago, a division of KPMG, conducted a pilot project for Mountain Bell involving Catalyst’s re-engineering tools ReACT, PathVU and Retrofit to transform an aging subsystem from Assembler (ALC) to COBOL.
Before the FCC opened up band width to the public resulting in the cellular boom, the top long distance providers were AT&T, MCI and Sprint, with AT&T owning over 90% of the market share. MCI was ranked second with about 5%, then Sprint with 2% followed by all the others sharing the remaining 3%.