AT&T, T-Mobile consider deal re-cut, Dish steps in

Dec 12, 2011
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For months now we've been hearing that AT&T and T-Mobile have been going back and forth with various investigatory boards, the FCC, the Department of Justice, their grandmothers, and today its come to light that AT&T is considering "recutting" its original $39 billion dollar deal for T-Mobile USA in light of U.S. antitrust authorities ever-rising opposition. The antitrust case at hand has been postponed in face of the possible recutting, and both AT&T and the Justice Department have joined in asking the judge to postpone all proceedings in the court until January 18th, 2012 -- that way everyone can take a rest and drink some egg-nog while they mull everything over.

T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom AG and AT&T have noted that they're currently actively considering "whether and how to revise our current transaction." This is a pretty clear sign that the deal as it existed earlier this year simply isn't going to pan out, and though AT&T up until last week said they were still going forward with the plan as it's existed for months, their tune as now changed up just a bit. AT&T Chief Executive Randall Stephenson spoke last week on how they had a "strong case" against the Justice Department's claims against them.

Earlier today though, after their joint filing, the trial in this case is "off indefinitely", or so says the "person familiar with the matter" said to the Wall Street Journal. The judge in this case, U.S. District Court Judge Ellen S. Huvelle, criticized the companies' decision to pull out on their application for a merger from the FCC saying that "everybody's time will be wasted."

Meanwhile Bloomberg is reporting that Dish Network Corp., the second largest satellite-TV provider in the USA, is considering trying to partner with T-Mobile if AT&T's bid to take over ends up failing. The source for this announcement is an interview with Dish Chief Executive Officer Joseph Clayton, who noted the following:

“We’re not interested in making money on selling our spectrum. We want to use it to create a national wireless network, video, voice and data. We’ve got expertise in satellite-TV, and we will in satellite broadband. The voice part, we’ll need some help with. We feel if the AT&T-T-Mobile deal goes through, we win. If it doesn’t go through, we still win.” - Clayton

In other words, if no deal is made, Dish snaps their fingers and makes something else happen. Gotta get those customers one way or the other! It's a love triangle in the making!


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