Posted on 17-Feb-2004 23:25.
Filed under: News
Cingular Wireless signed an agreement to acquire AT&T Wireless. At current numbers, the combined company would have 46 million customers and one of the most advanced digital networks in the U.S., with spectrum in 49 states and coverage in 97 of the top 100 markets. The combined 2003 annual revenues of the two companies would have exceeded $32 billion.
Under the terms of the agreement approved by the boards of directors of Cingular and AT&T Wireless, shareholders of AT&T Wireless will receive $15 cash per common share or approximately $41 billion. The acquisition, which is subject to the approvals of AT&T Wireless shareholders and federal regulatory authorities, and to other customary closing conditions, is expected to be completed as soon as late 2004.
"Today's announcement is a triple win for AT&T Wireless shareowners, customers and employees," said John D. Zeglis, AT&T Wireless Chairman and CEO. "For shareholders, the transaction provides a handsome return on investment. For customers, this means all the advantages only the nation's largest wireless company can provide. For employees who become part of the combined company, this means more opportunities than they otherwise would have had with AT&T Wireless as a standalone company."
Customers of the new company will have access to the largest GSM network in the United States. The companies expect to have an almost immediate improvement in coverage and call quality since both share the same technology.
The company also expects to make way for high-speed 3G services in the future. Cingular and AT&T Wireless have been rolling out high-speed wireless data including GPRS, EDGE and trialing next generation UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System).