“The chances of an AT&T-T-Mobile merger grow dimmer by the day, but there may yet be hope on the horizon for the telecommunications giants — next year’s election,” Lucas Shaw reports for TheWrap.
“The telecom industry has benefited from a change in administration before: In the 1990s, the Federal Communications Commission opposed SBC’s acquisition of AT&T during a Democratic administration, only to later approve it under a Republication administration,” Shaw reports. “The current FCC administration has already indicated its displeasure with the proposed deal, which would unite AT&T, the country’s second largest wireless communications service provider, and T-Mobile, the fourth largest. That prompted AT&T and Deustche Telekom, which owns T-Mobile, to remove their application.”
“If Barack Obama loses to a Republican, who would then make new appointments, rest assured the regulatory environment will become more favorable,” Shaw reports. “‘If the Republicans win, there is a new FCC and a Republican administration will be a lot more positive toward this merger than a democratic one,’ said longtime telecom analyst Roger Entner, founder of Recon Analytics.”
Shaw reports, “Each Republican candidate has been outspoken about reducing the government’s regulatory enforcement… The arrival of a Republican president doesn’t mean the deal would simply pass through without a fight, but it does mean that AT&T and T-Mobile may be cleverly stalling. By withdrawing their FCC application, they not only prolong the process, but prevent some of the information about the deal’s impact from getting out sooner.”
Read more in the full article here.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews readers too numerous to mention individually for the heads up.]