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Cellular South files a lawsuit to block AT&T, T-Mobile merger

Posted: , by Victor H.

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Cellular South files a lawsuit to block AT&T, T-Mobile merger
When big boys fight you wouldn’t expect nobody else to intervene, but Cellular South, a small regional carrier ranking 9th in scale across the States, has filed its own lawsuit to block AT&T’s $39 billion acqusition of T-Mobile.

"The merger of AT&T and T-Mobile is anti-competitive, and will result in consumers facing higher prices, less innovation, fewer choices and reduced competition," Cellular South said in a complaint.

Cellular South has a subscriber base estimated at 887,000 users, barely noticeable when put aside AT&T’s 98.6 million, but the regional carrier argues that the “Big Two” including AT&T and Verizon have hurt its business. Cellular South operates in Mississipi, Alabama, Tennessee and in parts of Florida, Kentucky, Arkansas and Louisiana.

The carrier joins a handful of parties trying to block the AT&T-T-Mobile merger. Sprint started the anti-merger campaign arguing that an acquisition would only create a monopoly and hurt competitiveness. The US Department of Justice (DoJ) joined with a lawsuit of its own and the FCC backed it up in a statement almost immediately. Seven state attorneys general have also joined in making the chances of the deal passing through slimmer. Forbes estimates that there’s a 30% to 40% probability of the merger happening, betting on Sprint’s and DoJ’s side.

Sprint also sided with Cellular South on this. “Today Cellular South stands with the U.S. Department of Justice, seven state Attorneys General and Sprint in asking the Courts to protect American consumers from the harms to competition, innovation, and pricing that likely would result if AT&T is allowed to takeover T-Mobile," Vonya McCann, Sprint's senior VP of government affairs at Sprint said.

source: Cellular South (PDF) via PC Mag

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posted on 20 Sep 2011, 06:30 4

1. som (Posts: 768; Member since: 10 Nov 2009)

T-Mobile was very happy to marry with AT&T because their services coverage areas are very small and customers are running away.

posted on 20 Sep 2011, 10:24

4. box (unregistered)

T-Mobile has had like 5 million contracts signed since the buyout was announced. I wouldn't call that "running away"

posted on 20 Sep 2011, 13:30

8. darth8ball (Posts: 520; Member since: 02 Aug 2011)

5 million contract 'renewals', since the merger was announced.

posted on 20 Sep 2011, 08:15

2. Laron (unregistered)

If T-Mobile and AT&T do merge, expect to see non contract carriers blow up:Cricket, Cellular South, Virgin Mobile, Boost, AT&T pay as you go (maybe), with ther $45-$60 unlimited plans and now that they're are getting high profile smartphones; let's hope that it doesn't come down to that. Anyone who can't see that AT&T is clearly in this for money is blind.

posted on 20 Sep 2011, 10:16

3. WirelessCon (Posts: 311; Member since: 11 May 2010)

Laron, Interesting take on the situation.

I think that most people want a One Provider plan. All media, communications, and computing through one monthly bill, prepaid or postpaid.

posted on 20 Sep 2011, 13:32 1

9. darth8ball (Posts: 520; Member since: 02 Aug 2011)

yes but having multiple choices for that one provider is the key here

posted on 20 Sep 2011, 11:03 1

6. Phoneguy007 (Posts: 218; Member since: 02 Jun 2011)

every company is in for the money....

posted on 20 Sep 2011, 13:26 3

7. AppleFanboy (Posts: 142; Member since: 07 Jun 2011)

and thats fine with me, i think AT&T deserves it and i hope the merger does go through

posted on 20 Sep 2011, 10:27 1

5. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

AT&T-Mobile was a bad idea when it was announced and it hasn't gotten any better with the passage of time.

Any time that competitors are removed from a market, the consumer suffers.

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