The AT&T and T-Mobile merger deal is officially dead. After months of seeking FCC approval and facing several road blocks, including a lawsuit from the DOJ, AT&T has finally succumbed to defeat and issued a statement today announcing that it is dropping its proposed bid to takeover T-Mobile for $39 billion.
Earlier today, there were reports that the deal was souring as AT&T could not negotiate selling off enough assets to make the deal more agreeable to the opposition. And now the merger is confirmed dead with the below statement from AT&T:
“The actions by the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Justice to block this transaction do not change the realities of the U.S. wireless industry. It is one of the most fiercely competitive industries in the world, with a mounting need for more spectrum that has not diminished and must be addressed immediately. The AT&T and T-Mobile USA combination would have offered an interim solution to this spectrum shortage. In the absence of such steps, customers will be harmed and needed investment will be stifled.”
With the merger falling through, AT&T will have to pay the $4 billion breakup fee, which it has already set aside. The amount has also already been charged to the carriers fourth quarter, reflecting the $3 billion in cash and the $1 billion book value of spectrum that it owes.