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The Who-Won't Get Fooled Again--AT&T/Verizon and Vodafone-UPDATED

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(g1a2d0047c1) (Photo credit: watchingfrogsboil)

What started out as an April Fools' Day story in the Financial Time's Alphaville on Monday has jumped to the rest of the media world and impacted the stock markets around the world. And, honestly, I don't know if it's true. UPDATE-LOOKS LIKE I WAS RIGHT. Verizon has said it's not.

The "what" is the reported teaming up of AT&T and Verizon to take over Vodafone, give Verizon 100 percent ownership in Verizon Wireless, and AT&T Vodafone's assets the world over. Truth is stranger than fiction so anything is possible but......

Forget the fact that its an end around the breakup of the Bell System as it's international, not domestic so the ruling doesn't apply, it sure is interesting. But to get a sobriety check I asked ArentFox telecom legal begal Ross Buntrock for his thoughts:

"The rumored Verizon/AT&T/Vodafone transaction promises to do for American wireless competition what Ed Whitacre did for landline competition in the late 1990’s and 2000’s:  completely eliminate any hope or possibility of it.  And as the FCC has noted in prior reports, the wireless industry in the US is not robustly competitive today."

While always on the mark, Aswath Rao had this to say to me on Twitter:

"The hint lies in the confluence of three claimed "facts": AT&T and VZ have each < $5B cash on hand, & the acq price is $245B"

Do you think all the media jumping on the story have been fooled?

-- Andy Abramson

 

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