AT&T reportedly in talks to sell T-Mobile assets to Leap Wireless

Alex Wagner
Editorial Director of News and Content from Omaha, NE
Published: November 29, 2011

AT&T Leap Wireless

Last week we got word that AT&T may be considering selling off quite a bit of T-Mobile's assets in order to get the merger of the two carriers approved, news that came after AT&T had yanked the application for approval of the deal it had submitted to the FCC. Now it looks like we may have an idea of which company might buy at least some of those assets: Leap Wireless, known best for its Cricket subsidiary. According to sources speaking to the New York Times, AT&T is currently in talks with Leap to sell off a large portion of T-Mobile's customer base and some of its wireless spectrum. No specific details were given, but the NYT claims that such a deal would make Leap the fourth-largest carrier in the U.S. while still leaving AT&T a hefty portion of the T-Mo spectrum that it feels it needs to help deploy its LTE network.

Although this potential deal between AT&T and Leap is still a rumor at this point, it would be pretty interesting to see it actually go down. Not only would Leap gain more than a few subscribers (it currently serves around seven million), but AT&T could also try to convince the Department of Justice and FCC to give its T-Mobile acquisition a stamp of approval since the resulting company of AT&T-Mo would be smaller than it would without a sale to Leap. Plus, AT&T would avoid that $6 billion break-up fee that it will need to pay should the T-Mo merger fall through. The story of the AT&T/T-Mobile deal just keeps getting more and more interesting as the days go by, so be sure to stay tuned for more!

Via New York Times