Even though the U.S. Department of Justice has made a definitive decision on AT&T's plan to acquire T-Mobile USA; the company refuses to give up.
According to a report from Reuters, AT&T isn't backing down in its steadfastness to acquire T-Mobile from Deutsche Telekom even after the DOJ put up a lawsuit attempting to block it. The report says AT&T will present a new proposal to acquire T-Mobile that addresses many of the Justice Department's concerns with various concessions. The concessions mostly revolve around the fact that AT&T's acquisition of T-Mobile would violate antitrust rules in the U.S.
With the new plan, AT&T is looking to get a deal done before the lawsuit reaches court. According to an anonymous source that talked to Reuters, the company is confident it can get a solution. However, analysts aren't sure this will ever happen and see the company as facing an uphill battle.
AT&T will legally fight for the merger but with the FCC in agreement with DOJ, approval is unlikely, Benchmark Capital analyst Clayton Moran said in a note to clients.
If the deal doesn't get done, AT&T is out $6 billion. The breakup fee would go to Deutsche Telekom, as the German telecom company would seek out another buyer for the fourth largest wireless telecom company in the U.S.
Among the concessions AT&T is willing to make is selling at least 25 percent of T-Mobile including airwaves and customers. The combination of T-Mobile and AT&T, which is the second largest wireless telecom company in the U.S, would be the biggest in the U.S. and could be trouble for Sprint, the third largest wireless telecom company in the U.S.
Naturally, Sprint praised the DOJ's decision saying it was a victory for consumers, competition and our country.
According to Reuters, AT&T was frustrated because it thought it was having meaningful discussions with the DOJ about the deal. The quickness of the lawsuit was a surprise to analysts as well.
The DOJ's filing to block the AT&T/T-Mobile merger comes as something of a surprise, with the timing much earlier than we had expected, given that the FCC is nowhere close to completing its review of the deal, Barclays Capital Markets analyst James Ratcliffe wrote in a note to clients.
If no deal is made between the DOJ and AT&T, the case will go to court, where the government would risk losing the case. According to Sharis Pozen, the acting head of the Justice Department's antitrust division, the Justice Department is open to discussions with AT&T.