AT&T proposes to buy Leap Wireless

AT&T proposes to buy Leap Wireless
America’s second largest carrier has entered into an agreement to buy the eighth largest carrier which operates under the brand of Cricket Wireless for $15 per share, or $1.2 billion. The proposal would transfer all assets and customers under AT&T’s ownership.

AT&T plans to retain the Cricket brand which will help retain the latter’s 5 million customers. Leap operates a CDMA and LTE network across several markets covering nearly 150 million people. The acquisition will also allow Cricket to expand its name into additional markets while offering services that will ride on AT&T’s network.

Leap holds a number of unutilized spectrum licenses in the PCS and AWS bands that might reach an additional 40 million people. That is the attractiveness to AT&T with this deal. The FCC and Department of Justice will subject the proposal to the usual review that is applied to other mergers and acquisitions. AT&T made no indication that it plans to maintain Leap’s CDMA network since it will begin selling Cricket services on AT&T’s incumbent network. Leap has an LTE network that covers approximately 21 million people.

AT&T will also expand its own distribution through Cricket’s existing retail channels. Leap employees will become part of AT&T’s pre-paid operations.

$15 per share is nearly double what Leap’s stock has been trading at until this announcement. AT&T also announced that it has already secured agreements from 30% of Leap’s share holders to vote in favor of the acquisition.

Leap Wireless was thought to be a potential acquisition target of DISH Network following its failed attempts to buy Sprint and Clearwire. Assuming that DISH does not try to start another bidding war for a wireless carrier, that is one less option for DISH to consider while it figures out how to build its own wireless operations.

source: AT&T



1. Dorothy69

Posts: 498; Member since: May 21, 2013

I can't believe that 150 million additional humans will now be subjected to AT&Terrible.

2. AMDPhenomX4

Posts: 48; Member since: Apr 06, 2013

What? How do you figure that math?

4. Sparhawk

Posts: 75; Member since: Mar 10, 2012

Maybe he shares his phone with 30 other people (Leap a.k.a. Cricket only has 5 million customers)

3. MobileCaseReview

Posts: 242; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

i dont understand why its terrible?

5. HASHTAG unregistered

I know, right? This should be a good thing for Cricket customers.

10. Dr.Phil

Posts: 2453; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

It's terrible because AT&T, like Verizon, charges way too much for their services. They also are rated the worst in customer service and they have caps on the amount of data you can use. There use to be a time that $20 got you unlimited data but now you have to pay $30 for 2GB worth of it. They also have continuously upped their charges (usually by adding in "administrative fees" just about every year). And to top that all off, they are now requiring customers to keep their devices the entire 2 year contract instead of being able to upgrade every 18 months. Conversely, T-Mobile and Sprint are now guaranteeing unlimited data, have lowered their rates, and are offering services like being able to trade in your phone twice a year. So, in short, I would have to agree with Dorothy that AT&T is not a good service provider. EDIT: Just to point out, I have been an AT&T customer for over 10 years (originally a Cingular customer), so I know just how bad they are.

12. WPAndroidATT

Posts: 4; Member since: Jul 12, 2013

Where do you get $30/2GB? It was $25/2gb at a time when VZW was charging $30/2gb, They changed the pricing to be in line with what VZW offered at the time but upped the data so that it became $30/3gb thus giving the customer more data for the same cost as the competition. And they just added the admin fee, that happens to be a very comprable fee structure to sprint and VZW SO this bad service provider is the same one who was just rated best overall network and fastest data speeds by both PCMAG and Root Metrics, just wanna make sure we are talking about the same AT&T And as far as Sprint and T-mo are concerned, when they can avg 30-40 mbps and a peak of 55-60 i and never drop a call in my area we can have a talk, at this point sprint doesnt offer LTE anywhere in my state and T-mo just launched 1 city so sorry I'll happily pay a bit more for much better service in my area

16. Dorothy69

Posts: 498; Member since: May 21, 2013

PCMag is a biased whore that allows itself to be bought by Big Money, which AT&T has lots of; they should invest some of it in new towers.

23. WPAndroidATT

Posts: 4; Member since: Jul 12, 2013

You mean like the 890 Million they have spent in AZ (where I live) in the past 2 years, or the over 600 Million in WA (where I just moved from)

18. Dr.Phil

Posts: 2453; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

Do you mind sending a screenshot of your average "30-40 Mbps"? I would seriously like to see that because while that may have been true when AT&T's LTE first came out, I doubt that you are really seeing that kind of speed on a daily basis. They recently just tested AT&T's LTE network in comparison to the competition and they actually found T-Mobile's LTE to be only about 4 Mbps slower than AT&T's LTE network (the same PC Mag article you were talking about): Can you really tell me that you would spend the extra money for 4Mbps? I have already calculated it and if I were to switch to T-Mobile (which I am highly considering once my contract is over), I would be saving $80 a month while still keeping my same service features in place. Sorry, $80 isn't worth having 4Mbps faster speed when, in reality, you are probably not even going to tell the difference since all your heavy downloading is suppose to be done on a wi-fi network anyways. Also, you are right I should've put 3GB of data instead of 2GB, but the point is still valid. Why should I be paying $30 for 3GB worth of data when T-Mobile and Sprint offer an unlimited plan with no overages? I just don't see how someone can come on here and justify AT&T's pricing structure when they are pretty much robbing their customers of every penny. When you have a family plan that is costing you $200 a month, you can't help but think there has to be something wrong with that. You also can't help but think there is something wrong with AT&T getting rid of their early upgrade program and instead making the customer wait the extra few months before getting a new device. This is not something that is okay. The fact that you are on here defending their business policies just goes to show how blind, ignorant, and numb you are to a carrier taking advantage of your wallet. And that's my final word.

22. riggsy

Posts: 25; Member since: Apr 16, 2012

I consistantly get 50 mb down and and 20 mb up on ATT LTE here in Nashville. I agree on the part that ATT is charging to much though.

13. -box-

Posts: 3991; Member since: Jan 04, 2012

They're cheaper than Verizon, so not quite as bad, but yeah, they're a bit higher than they should be.

14. WPAndroidATT

Posts: 4; Member since: Jul 12, 2013

Them and VZW cost more than the rest because of how much they spend on their respective networks. I live in AZ and in the past 2.5 years AT&T has spent almost 900 million dollars on tower upgrades just in this state, I can only imagine what they have spent in places like CA or TX

15. Dorothy69

Posts: 498; Member since: May 21, 2013

You tell em' Dr. Phil, I too have experienced AT&Terrible aka Cingular aka AT&T(rite) before that. Leap has markets that cover 'over million people' as per the article; those poor souls, my pigtails unravel just thinking about their fate.

9. Omarc07

Posts: 574; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

Ey Dorothy att aint that bad .

6. Slammer

Posts: 1515; Member since: Jun 03, 2010

Some may not care about this merge and some may even celebrate it if it should happen. But, the fact is, every ounce of carrier elimination regardless of size, only removes more competiton from the market. This does not placate customer advocacy for better pricing and choices. It only secures dominance for already super large carriers. John B.

7. AMDPhenomX4

Posts: 48; Member since: Apr 06, 2013

Probably only for spectrum.

8. Galen20K

Posts: 577; Member since: Dec 26, 2008

boo! this is a terrible deal.

11. WPAndroidATT

Posts: 4; Member since: Jul 12, 2013

How is this a bad thing in anyway? Existing Cricket customers will soon have access to arguably the best quality network in the US and ATT will have more spectrum to make that network even better for its customers as well as Crickets.

17. MartyK

Posts: 1043; Member since: Apr 11, 2012

You forgot to add, how many more customer will have to pay higher price, and how much money Att will make!.. these people didn't want Att, or they would had join Att.

19. galanoth

Posts: 428; Member since: Nov 26, 2011

I have AT&T and my data speeds are faster than the other 3 big networks. TMo and Sprint are cheaper but have less footprint. A generalization I keep reading is that: Verizon = best service AT&T = fastest data speed T-Mobile = cheapest plans Spring = Middleish of the pack in terms of service and plan pricing.

20. mike2959

Posts: 696; Member since: Oct 08, 2011

I've had all 4 major carrier's and Alltel. In Northeast Ohio AT&T is excellent. They do cost more than TMO and Sprint, but the service, speed and coverage is superior. Service... I just came off a cruise, got my cell phone bill, it was 500.00, called AT&T, thought I was covered because I had the international thing setup, I was wrong, but they took off the charges of 380.00!! Speed... I can send anyone sceen shots of LTE of 30MBps, and hspa+ of 12mbps. Coverage... Just no issue's. Great coverage. Sprint is just horrible. Wimax is a joke. And people stop waiting for Sprint's LTE! If don't have a Sprint signal now, you won't have LTE! Sprint is like Walmart new Steaks. Tmo... Just like you hear, in ya up in da hood, it's all gud... Lol.

21. VLaRueC

Posts: 189; Member since: Dec 18, 2012

Based on what I've observed, people hate to see bigger companies get bigger (getting closer to a duopoly) while wishing BlackBerry and Microsoft to disappear.

24. RedPhantom07

Posts: 13; Member since: Jul 21, 2012

I'm wondering if based on the recent creation of AIO Wireless by at&t, if Cricket will factor into the whole AIO Wireless, or if at&t will use the Cricket Operations and retail stores to rapidly expand their AIO Wireless footprint. I know many companies like Sprint tend to have multiple pre-paid companies, but at&t already has two, and Cricket would make three. It'll be interesting to see if this happens.

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