Sunday, April 24, 2005

Qwest Opposes SBC+AT&T Merger

Qwest Communications is urging the FCC to block SBC's proposed acquisition of AT&T on the grounds that it would be bad for the industry. If the FCC does not block the merger outright, Qwest is urging regulators to impose significant conditions on the deal, such as divestitures of facilities and other related overlapping operations in SBC's 13-state operating territory. In addition, Qwest argues that because the proposed merged company will benefit from the elimination of AT&T as a competitor -- and benefit from the elimination of other competitors' access to AT&T's wholesale services and access facilities -- other significant conditions must be imposed in order to attempt to level the playing field.

"The combination of SBC and AT&T as proposed would set our industry back years," said Steve Davis, Qwest senior vice president of public policy. "SBC proposes to acquire its largest competitor and greatest strategic threat. It is inconceivable that this transaction could be in the public interest without the imposition of significant conditions and required divestitures."

Qwest has also filed a protest with the Public Utilities Commission of California opposing SBC's merger with AT&T.

Qwest did not mention its own bid to acquire MCI.

See also