AT&T has signed a massive $780 million contract to buy Alltel’s operations in the U.S. To be more specific, AT&T bought the U.S venture of Atlantic Tele-Network Inc. (ATNI), a company which runs its business by the brand ‘Alltel’ in several countries. The purchase includes wireless infrastructures, network assets, retail shops, licenses and registrations along with 585,000 subscribers.
AT&T made this purchase to expand their user community in the rural areas. Alltel’s operations covered 6 states- South Carolina, Idaho, Illinois, Ohio, Georgia and North Carolina which are mostly rural regions. ATNI’s operates on a CDMA network. So, AT&T would have to do quite a bit of work for the network conversion necessary. AT&T said the modification won’t cause any dilution to EPS or have any impact on funding.
AT&T will buy spectrum to cover bands of 700 MHz, 850 MHz, and 1900 MHz. AT&T made huge spectrum purchases last year from NextWave, Comcast, Horizon and SDG&E and continues to buy more as the carrier is assembling its next generation 4G LTE network. The company has already obtained WCS and AWS-1 spectrum in almost 608 telecommunication markets covering 82% of the total population.
If the FCC and the Justice Dept. approve the deal, then by the second half of 2013, AT&T will be able to close the deal.