AT&T has officially pushed back its target date for approval and completion of its bid to buy T-Mobile USA. According the company’s quarterly regulatory filing, AT&T expects the deal to close during the first half of 2012, and not the first quarter of next year as previously stated. This according to multiple reports.
The $39 billion AT&T/T-Mobile deal has come under intense scrutiny from competitors, governmental bodies, and NGOs alike. Sprint Nextel, C Spire (Cellular South) and the US Department of Justice have all filed suit to block the deal, alleging that combing the nation’s number two and three wireless carriers would lead to unhealthily lessened competition and higher prices for consumers. The validity of Sprint and C Spire’s lawsuits were upheld in federal court Wednesday, though the judge did throw out parts of the complaint.
AT&T’s deal to buy spectrum from Qualcomm is also slipping, likely as collateral damage from the T-Mo acquisition proceedings. Originally set to close by the end of this year, the spectrum acquisition is now targeted for Q1 2012, also according to AT&T’s quarterly filing.