Archive for: merger

Verizon CEO To Government: “Not Allowing AT&T/T-Mobile Merger Will Hurt U.S. Wireless Customers.”

  • September 22, 2011 8:38 am

If you thought Verizon’s stance would mirror Sprint/Nextel in opposing the AT&T/T-Mobile merger, you’re in for a world of surprise. During an investor conference on Wednesday, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam stated that the government needs to allow the merger to allow the cellular industry to keep pace with the customer demand.

“We need to be very thoughtful on what the impacts would be to the overall industry if this is a way to regulate the industry without actually passing regulation.”

“I have taken the position that the AT&T merger with T-Mobile was kind of like gravity. It had to occur, because you had a company with a T-Mobile that had the spectrum but didn’t have the capital to build it out. AT&T needed the spectrum, they didn’t have it in order to take care of their customers, and so that match had to occur.”

The statement is somewhat surprising considering AT&T would leapfrog Verizon in total customer base by many tens of millions. So why are they supportive of the merger?

Another Kick In The Teeth: Cellular South Files Lawsuit Against AT&T To Block Merger.

  • September 19, 2011 6:58 pm

AT&T just isn’t getting any love. First it was he DoJ. And then Sprint. Then the real hurt began with the states of California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Washington recently joining the fray. Unfortunately AT&T’s uphill battle continues to get worst as Cellular South has just filed their own lawsuit against AT&T. As the other parties have already stated in their own respective filings, Cellular South beats the same drum:

“If AT&T were to complete this deal, not only would it substantially lessen competition, but it would essentially consolidate the market into the hands of the ‘Big Two’ – AT&T and Verizon. Today’s filing is another step in Cellular South’s unwavering effort to pursue the best interests of competition, wireless consumers, and our nation’s economy.

With mounting pressure from the private, public, and federal levels combined, how could anyone approve the merger?

But don’t count AT&T out just yet. The carrier has already promised to do “whatever it takes” to get the DoJ’s blessings up to and including selling off assets in markets lacking competition.

Stay tuned. This battle is far form over…

Kick ‘Em While They’re Down: 7 States Join DoJ Lawsuit To Block AT&T Merger.

  • September 16, 2011 5:51 pm

Despite AT&T’s claims to the contrary, it appears a growing number of citizens and local governments alike aren’t buying AT&T’s lies argument that combining the nation’s 2nd and 4th wireless carriers into one massive national GSM monopoly is a good idea. Today California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Washington officially joined the Department of Justice’s lawsuit aimed at stopping the AT&T merger. Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan responded commented on the states support by saying: “Blocking this acquisition protects consumers and businesses against fewer choices, higher prices, less innovation, and lower quality service”. The DoJ in return voiced their pleasure in regards to the added support and reiterated their official stance: The merger is bad for everyone except AT&T.

Besides being a raw deal for consumers all around, public and government scorn towards the merger is likely to have been worsened back in mid-August when confidential documents containing damming information regarding AT&T’s true cost requirements for next-gen network rollouts leaked. The very next day after said leak internal AT&T computer inventory screenshots were also leaked which showed the carriers’ plans to remove all but one messaging plan — the highest priced $20 unlimited option. Amongst public outcry AT&T claimed most of their customers either texted enough to save money with the $20 plan or so little that a per-message fee was more economical. But the picture of what could be — AT&T cornering customers by removing legitimate service options and only marketing the most expensive ones — was thrust into the spotlight.

The news of added anti-merger support comes not even 24 hours after 15 congressman sent a letter penned by Rep. Heath Shuler (D-NC) to President Barack Obama urging him to help the DoJ and AT&T settle so a deal could be reached. On top of all of this, Sprint has also levied their own lawsuit AT&T’s way.

In short: Because (1) customer protections come before company profits and (2) AT&T’s glaring stupidity, the chances of the AT&T/T-Mobile merger are looking less probable by the week (thank god).

Judge Overseeing AT&T Merger Lawsuit Sets September 21st Hearing.

  • September 7, 2011 12:20 pm

AT&T and T-Mobile USA parent company Deutsche Telekom still have a chance in pushing their proposed merger through despite ongoing lawsuits. The judge overseeing the merger lawsuit specifically between the Department of Justice and AT&T has set a September 21st hearing date in which both parties can propose amended plans for the merger in hopes of persuading the DoJ (among others) that the merger will in fact protect consumers and increase competition while starving off price hikes. The judge, Ellen S. Huvelle of the United States District Court in Washington, has also informed both sides to come prepared to negotiate if any type of settlement/agreement is truly wanted.

In order for the merger to be accepted, AT&T will likely have to give up vast chunks of spectrum and/or markets to appease government groups nervous about anti-competitive and monopolistic issues from arising. It makes sense, though. In many areas there will only be a single, major GSM carrier should the AT&T/T-Mobile merger be allowed under current conditions.

But even with the prospect of a tweaked merger plan, public support is less than positive. It seems most of the general public (who’ve voiced their opinion at least) can readily see through AT&T’s empty PR lies and marketing tactics. But can the government and courts?

AT&T Responds To Sprint Lawsuit.

  • September 6, 2011 5:23 pm

You may or may not have heard Sprint doesn’t want AT&T to scoop up T-Mobile. While in there eyes they’ll become a very distant third place competitor, we’d like to hope that they really do care about the U.S. consumers (read: us) that will inevitably get screwed by AT&T’s gargantuan size should the merger be approved. With that said, Sprint has launched their own lawsuit against the AT&T/T-Mobile duo in hopes of getting the merger blocked. And like clockwork, AT&T has responded.

If you were hoping for something worth reading out of camp AT&T, we sorry to report it is but more drum beating and blatant lies. Grab your snack of choice and jump inside for AT&T’s official response…

AT&T Has Outs To Escape Breakup Fee Should AT&T/T-Mobile Merger Fall Through.

  • September 5, 2011 1:50 pm

Almost bigger than the AT&T/T-Mobile merger news itself is the fact that should the merger fall through, AT&T is on the hook for up to $6 billion in cash. While T-Mobile would most likely rather be taken under AT&T’s wing, we’re pretty sure they’d gladly accept $6 billion to fill their bank accounts with. But therein lies the problem. Even if the merger does fall through, AT&T has built in protections that exempt them from any breakup fees…

Leaked AT&T-Mobile Merger Documents Re-Published Online.

  • August 16, 2011 1:23 pm

Almost as fast as a few damning pages of secretive AT&T/T-Mobile merger documents were uploaded to the FCC’s website they were removed. Thankfully Gizmodo snagged said documents and re-published them to show the sham AT&T is trying to pull. We’ve already gone over the basic gist of what AT&T is reporting to public officials (and the public) and how it’s different from what their own internal documents state. For now we’ll let you sift through AT&T’s growing web of lies as all six pages of the scandalous FCC document are ready and waiting just after the break…

Google To Purchase Motorola Mobility For $12.5 Billion.

  • August 15, 2011 8:06 am

The mobile world just became a lot more interesting — today it has been revealed that Google is in the beginning stages of purchasing Motorola Mobility, the company’s mobile-only unit. The acquisition will cost Google a cool $12.5 billion, though shouldn’t be too hard for Google to muster up considering their $35+ billion cash reserves. According to the press release Google will run Motorola as a separate business and Motorola will continue to be an Android licensee.

Google’s new stance raises some very interesting questions/scenarios. First and foremost, Google will now more or less feature a complete “stack” — they’ll control both hardware and software in-house much like Apple. As far as Motorola competitors go, will they see Google’s acquisition as but another challenge or defect to Windows Phone? You have some time to think it over as final approval for the acquisition isn’t expected until late 2011/early 2012.

The next few months will be highly interesting to watch play out. Thoughts? Press releases after the break.

AT&T/T-Mobile Merger Woes: Large Number Of T-Mobile Stores To Close.

  • June 23, 2011 10:12 am

Besides the fact that allowing AT&T and T-Mobile to create one uber carrier that will hold an extremely disproportionate amount of the cellular market, a new report by the Wall Street Journal casts even more doubt on how many people the merger will actually help.

Currently there are roughly 9,200 AT&T and T-Mobile stores across the U.S. with ~41% of all AT&T stores having a T-Mobile store within 1 mile. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see where this is going — broke town for current T-Mobile store owners large and small.

The real kicker, however, is that T-Mobile and AT&T employees are not allowed to communicate as to which stores are actually closing giving T-Mobile store owners absolutely no heads up to prepare for possible impending financial ruin.

With already weak housing and retail economies, hearing of several thousand store closings isn’t likely to spur economic growth in the respective neighborhoods and communities that will be affected.

Hurray for less competition and price hikes!