AT&T; drops bid for T-Mobile

December 20th, 2011 - 1:06 pm ICT by IANS  

New York, Dec 20 (IANS/EFE) AT&T; Inc. abandoned Monday its $39 billion bid for T-Mobile USA, a deal that sparked opposition from the US government and consumer groups.

The Dallas-based giant said it decided to withdraw its offer for the US wireless unit of Germany’s Deutsche Telekom after a thorough review of the options.

“The actions by the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Justice to block this transaction do not change the realities of the US wireless industry,” AT&T; said in a statement.

“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 company said.

AT&T; said its planned tie-up with T-Mobile USA offered an “interim solution” to the spectrum shortage and that the lack of such steps will hurt customers.

“AT&T; will continue to be aggressive in leading the mobile Internet revolution,” the firm’s chairman and CEO, Randall Stephenson, said.

The planned merger would have created the largest wireless operator in the US, with 30 percent more subscribers than chief rival Verizon.

The Justice Department filed suit in August to block the combination, asserting that it would reduce competition and raise rates for consumers.

Verizon Wireless is the No. 1 US wireless operator.

–IANS/EFE
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