AT&T Pushes Back Expected Close of T-Mobile Deal

Don't let it get away!

Keep track of the stocks that matter to you.

Help yourself with the Fool's FREE and easy new watchlist service today.

AT&T (NYSE: T  ) said it now expects its proposed $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile USA to close by the end of the first half of next year, a few months later than it originally planned, according to a regulatory filing. 

In a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, AT&T said the deal will close in the first half of 2012, pending regulatory approval. Previously, AT&T had anticipated seeing the deal closing in March 2012. The Department of Justice sued in August to block the deal on antitrust grounds, and a trial is set to begin Feb. 13. AT&T first announced the deal in late March 2011.

If the merger transaction does fall apart, AT&T will be required to pay T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom a $6 billion breakup fee, which includes $3 billion in cash and $3 billion in spectrum and roaming agreements.

The legal troubles for AT&T grew after U.S. District Judge Ellen Huvelle ruled on Wednesday that Sprint Nextel (NYSE: S  ) and C Spire Wireless could continue parts of their lawsuit to block the AT&T/T-Mobile deal. While Huvelle threw out many of the claims that Sprint and C Spire, formerly Cellular South, made in their filings, she ruled that the two could continue to pursue claims that the deal will harm the mobile-device marketplace. 

Interestingly, AT&T also said in the SEC filing that it now expects its proposed $1.93 billion purchase of Qualcomm's (Nasdaq: QCOM  ) 700 MHz Media FLO spectrum, which was announced in December 2010, to close by the end of the first quarter of next year, later than its previous expectation for the deal to close by year-end. The FCC needs to approve the license transfer.

In August, the FCC said it would consider the AT&T/Qualcomm transaction side-by-side with the AT&T/T-Mobile deal. Though the FCC did not formally combine the reviews of the two acquisitions, the move was a setback for AT&T and Qualcomm, which argued that the two deals should be evaluated independent of one another.

This article originally published here. Get your wireless industry briefing here.

The Motley Fool owns shares of Qualcomm. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Read/Post Comments (4) | Recommend This Article (3)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On November 05, 2011, at 11:21 PM, conradsands wrote:

    According to the report “Corporate Taxpayers & Corporate Tax Dodgers 2008-10,” two of the 25 companies with the largest total tax subsidies were AT&T at #2 ($14.5 billion) and Verizon at #3 ($12.3 billion). Also, there were 30 corporations that paid less than nothing in aggregate federal income taxes over the same period. These 30 companies, whose pretax U.S. profits totaled $160 billion over the three years, included Verizon. The report states the laws that allow this were not enacted in a vacuum, but rather were adopted in response to relentless corporate lobbying, threats and campaign support.

  • Report this Comment On November 05, 2011, at 11:43 PM, conradsands wrote:

    Consumers are finally noticing that AT&T and Verizon = The Most Expensive Wireless Plans in America. We know where Verizon and AT&T (both in the top 5 for corporate lobbying) get all that money to run commercials 24x7, pay out huge “fat cat” executive bonuses and hire armies of lawyers and lobbyists to push the U.S. market into a wireless industry duopoly -- the American consumer. This is how AT&T and Verizon fashion themselves as brilliant … with their political use of money.

    Taking into account the whole U.S. market, a combination of AT&T and T-Mobile would increase the Herfindahl-Hirschman Index (HHI), a widely accepted measure of market concentration, to 3,216 from 2,848, according to a Bloomberg analysis. Any score above 2,500 indicates a highly concentrated market, and any increase of more than 200 points clearly enhances market power, according to federal guidelines.

    If this ridiculous deal goes through, Sprint will be the only low-priced post-paid national wireless carrier left in the United States. T-Mobile customers are already fleeing to Sprint because they know they won’t get low prices from AT&T or Verizon. But AT&T and Verizon are two of the top corporate lobbyists in the country, so beware of how things could “mysteriously” turn in this case.

    “It’s only a slight overstatement to say that if they weren’t going to block this one, the Justice Department might as well just throw the antitrust guidelines out the window,” said Herbert Hovenkamp, professor of law at the University of Iowa, who is considered by many to be the dean of American antitrust law. “This merger clearly seems to violate them.”

  • Report this Comment On November 05, 2011, at 11:44 PM, conradsands wrote:

    AT&T’s Dirty Money at Work …

    Snippets from CNN story …

    AT&T lobbyists push for T-Mobile deal

    For years, AT&T has been one of the biggest political and lobbying forces in Washington, D.C. Last year, it spent $15.3 million and had 93 lobbyists on its roster, including six former lawmakers. Germany's Deutsche Telekom spent $3 million on lobbying for T-Mobile USA in 2010, armed with 41 lobbyists and one former lawmaker.

    Many lawmakers have a personal interest in seeing AT&T do well. AT&T ranked as the sixth most popular investment among members of the House and Senate in 2009, the most recent year for which such data is available, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

    And AT&T is considered a heavy hitter during campaign election cycles. In 2010, donors with links to the company made nearly $4 million in campaign contributions to candidates running for federal office.

  • Report this Comment On November 06, 2011, at 12:43 AM, MichaelDSimms wrote:

    Well sounds like somebody needs to think of getting rid of their cell phone if they feel they they are getting cheated. Fact it is a luxury item, if you feel you can't afford it ditch it.

Add your comment.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 1584634, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 11/30/2015 8:50:32 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated 2 days ago Sponsored by:
DOW 17,798.49 -14.90 0.00%
S&P 500 2,090.11 1.24 0.00%
NASD 5,127.53 11.38 0.00%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

11/27/2015 12:59 PM
QCOM $48.54 Down -0.08 +0.00%
Qualcomm CAPS Rating: ****
S $3.73 Down -0.03 +0.00%
Sprint CAPS Rating: **
T $33.57 Up +0.12 +0.00%
AT&T CAPS Rating: ****