Deutsche Telekom and AT&T withdrew their application for approval by the Federal Communications Commission of a planned $39 billion deal for T-Mobile USA to focus on obtaining the green light from the Department of Justice.
After the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on November 22 announced
that it is circulating a proposed order that would designate the sale of T-Mobile USA to AT&T for hearing, both Deutsche Telekom and AT&T today withdrew the pending applications regarding the sale of T-Mobile USA. The pending applications are listed in the Public Notice released by the Federal Communications Commission on April 28, 2011 in that proceeding. The companies say that they are continuing to pursue the sale of T-Mobile USA to AT&T.
"This formal step today is being undertaken by both companies to consolidate their strength and to focus their continuing efforts on obtaining antitrust clearance for the transaction from the Department of Justice," the companies said in a statement. "As soon as practical, Deutsche Telekom and AT&T intend to seek the necessary FCC approval."
In addition, AT&T has announced it expects to recognize a pretax $4 billion accounting charge to reflect the potential break up fees due to Deutsche Telekom in the event that the transaction does not receive regulatory approval.
The U.S. Department of Justice went to court in August to oppose AT&T's purchase of T-Mobile from Deutsche Telekom on antitrust grounds. A trial in that case is due to begin on February 13.