We knew that Sprint wasn’t happy about AT&T’s proposed acquisition of T-Mobile USA, based on comments by Sprint CEO Dan Hesse about the deal. But the company today made it official, announcing that it will formally oppose the $39 billion combination.

An excerpt from the company’s statement.

The transaction, which requires the approval of the Department of Justice and the Federal Communications Commission, and will likely spark a host of hearings in the U.S. Congress, would reverse nearly three decades of actions by the U.S. government and the courts that modernized and opened U.S. communications markets to competition. The wireless industry has sparked unprecedented levels of competition, innovation, job creation and investment for the American economy, all of which could be undone by this transaction.

AT&T and Verizon are already by far the largest wireless providers. If approved, the proposed acquisition would create a combined company that would be almost three times the size of Sprint in terms of wireless revenue and would entrench AT&T’s and Verizon’s duopoly control over the wireless market. The wireless industry moving forward would be dominated overwhelmingly by two vertically integrated companies with unprecedented control over the U.S. wireless post-paid market, as well as the availability and price of key inputs, such as backhaul and access needed by other wireless companies to compete.

AT&T has of course defended the deal, saying it will improve network service and benefit consumers.

“This transaction delivers significant customer, shareowner and public benefits that are available at this level only from the combination of these two companies with complementary network technologies, spectrum positions and operations,” said Randall Stephenson, the company’s CEO, in the acquisition announcement.

 

 

Comments

  • http://www.dainbinder.com Dain Binder

    Thank you Sprint

  • Anonymous

    The fact of the matter is Sprint is worried they will get bought up by Verizon.

  • mcloed121

    sprint is just jealus of at&t go at&t you rock

  • Anonymous

    Here’s a nice breakdown of the “significant customer benefits” for T-Mobile customers that will be forced onto AT&T: http://market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=182991

    T-Mobile 2-phone family plan w/ data: $151 (no overage fees)
    AT&T 2-phone family plan w/ data: $194 (plus overage fees)

    • Anonymous

      Interesting, I have a 4 phone family plan with data for only $196/month with AT&T. I guess your data is wrong.

  • http://twitter.com/mikerigsby Mike Rigsby

    That merger, if it goes through, will severely hurt both current, and future, T-mobile customers but their employees as well. AT&T does not “rock”. Do you really want to have only two choices for cellular providers in the US? Because that’s what will happen if this deal goes through.

    They’re easily the worst overall cellular provider for network stability and customer service and they’re hoping they can improve both by absorbing T-mobile, which is good in both of those areas.

    The only people who will benefit by this merger are the, already highly paid, executives and the shareholders.

    • Anonymous

      Prove it, don’t speculate it. Oh, you can’t. Sucks to be you.

  • GB in NY

    The wording of Sprint’s protest is very narrow, most likely because they appreciate their own precarious position as an impending likely target. Sprint’s likely merger companion(s) will not be a wireless operator, but rather a friendly partner in the telecommunication space such as Google.

    Regulatory approval of AT&T’s proposed acquisition of T-Mobile USA poses an interesting question for the FCC and Justice Department, as well as Congress. Does this deal reduce competition in a way that disfavors consumers — as it appears on the surface — or will it actually serve as the catalyst for yet another deal that will be THE pro-consumer game changer in the mobile carrier space?

    Enter Google with a ton of cash. Already a Sprint partner, thanks to the Android operating system, their Google Voice feature set is about to become a sexy option for all Sprint customers. Enter Comcast and Time Warner Cable, each with much-needed wireless spectrum ready to deploy, presumably in a way that gives them each a stake in a national platform. Is it possible — even likely — that the merger of AT&T Wireless and T-Mobile USA accelerates the coming together of Google, Sprint, Comcast and Time Warner Cable under a brand name like, say, Google Wireless?

    Assuming Google were to be the dominant stakeholder, it would be Google’s ethos at the core of such a venture’s company culture: innovation for innovation’s sake at game-changing affordable prices — against which AT&T and Verizon would be compelled to compete. It would also give the Android operating system a key perch from which it can more effectively compete with Apple’s iOS and iTunes commerce chain. What’s more, it’s easy to imagine that a potential Google Wireless would be a proposition attractive enough to ultimately win a share of the US mobile business much bigger than Sprint has been able to claim thus far.

    In short, it would be a win for Google, a win for Sprint, a win for Comcast and Time Warner Cable and, most important, a win for consumers.

    The question now: will regulators examining the AT&T purchase of T-Mobile USA be thorough enough in their due diligence to recognize that this may be one of those rare occasions when consolidation actually leads to a better landscape for consumers?

  • Anonymous

    Whine Whine Whine. Sprint failed in too many ways, now they fail as a whiner.

    • Nobody

      You’re really immature.

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