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Will Arnett Pleads AT&T's Case as T-Mobile Merger Wobbles

Posted by Shirley Brady on November 27, 2011 11:05 PM

After the head of the Federal Communications Commissioned moved to block AT&T buying T-Mobile's USA operations, AT&T announced on Thanksgiving Day that it was withdrawing (for now) its application with the FCC for its planned $39 billion purchase of T-Mobile USA — and would take a $4 billion charge against earnings, the amount owed to T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom in the event of a failed deal. Its next move? According to the New York Times, an asset sell-off is likely looming.

"Focusing on the antitrust trial, scheduled for February, the companies ... vowed to continue to pursue their bold plan to combine the second- and fourth-largest cellphone carriers in the United States," the Times reports of the buzz on Wall Street. "But the companies’ ambitions must be scaled back if they want any chance at a deal, analysts say. To address the objections of the Justice Department and F.C.C. that a merger would be anticompetitive, AT&T could agree to sell off 40 percent or so T-Mobile’s assets to wireless rivals, they say."

Possible scenarios include selling assets to rivals who opposed the merger: Sprint and MetroPCS, the third- and fifth-largest U.S. carriers. Good thing AT&T has hired a "high-powered Internet attorney" to plead its case: "High-powered internet attorney Kent Wesley," played by Will Arnett, who will say or do "whatever it takes to get you the AT&T 4G smartphone you deserve." See more of AT&T's "You've Got a Case" holiday campaign with Arnett below.Continue reading...

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AT&T and Deutsche Telekom Talk Up Deal to Wall Street

Posted by Shirley Brady on March 21, 2011 10:30 AM

In addition to a conference call with analysts and investors this morning, AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson and Deutsche Telekom CEO René Obermann spoke with CNBC to talk about their "transformative" agreement to exchange T-Mobile's US business and make AT&T the #1 wireless carrier in America.

brand news

AT&T-Mobile: The $39 Billion Merger

Posted by Shirley Brady on March 20, 2011 09:00 PM

Following news that it was in talks with Sprint, Deutsche Telekom today agreed to sell its interest in T-Mobile USA to AT&T for $39 billion and an 8% stake in AT&T.

The deal, which would face stiff regulatory scrutiny, would make AT&T the top wireless carrier in the US and "shift the competitive landscape" for mobile operators in America.

“This transaction represents a major commitment to strengthen and expand critical infrastructure for our nation’s future,” commented AT&T chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson in a press release that underlined that this deal is less about T-Mobile's brand — it will remain an independent company — and more about its network helping pave the way for 4G.Continue reading...

brand r.i.p.

New Frontier: Midwest And Frontier Airlines Merging Under One Brand

Posted by Barry Silverstein on April 14, 2010 10:15 AM

Republic Airways Holdings acquired both Midwest and Frontier Airlines last year, indicating that it planned to operate the two airlines independently. But consolidation seems to be an inevitability in the airline industry. Republic has announced its decision to merge the two airlines under one brand name. And the winner is... Frontier.

As the Midwest brand takes off on a one-way trip into the horizon, the first thought may be, "Really -- Frontier?"

Admittedly, Frontier has the cooler, more contemporary look to its planes. The word FRONTIER runs across the entire body of each airplane, and the tails carry beautiful full-color images of animals (or "spokesanimals," as Frontier calls them). But it is Midwest that has been rated #1 in overall quality for mid-size U.S. economy service for eight consecutive years in the Zagat Airline Survey. Frontier, on the other hand, filed for bankruptcy in 2008 before it was acquired by Republic in 2009.

So why christen the merged airline with what appears to be the weaker brand? According to Republic Airways Holdings CEO Bryan Bedford, the decision was "an emotional one."Continue reading...

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