TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Tennessee Gives Unconditional Approval to AT&T and Bell South Merger

Tennessee Gives Unconditional Approval to AT&T and Bell South Merger

News Wire (
Thu, 13 Jul 2006 13:42:28 -0500

The Tennessee Regulatory Authority gave their unconditional approval
earlier this week to AT&T's $67 billion acquisition of BellSouth.

"I did not find any compelling evidence that this merger would do any
harm to consumers," said TRA Chairman, Sara Kyle who was joined by
Director, Pat Miller in approving the merger. A third TRA member, Ron
Jones, tried to put conditions on the merger, but his amendment was
voted down by the Kyle and Miller.

BellSouth Tennessee president, Marty Dickens, praised the decision
saying that "this is two big companies coming together to become one
big company, and that's going to be good for shareholders and

Dickens and other BellSouth executives believe that the huge merger
will improve competition in the state by improving broadband access in
rural areas and speeding up the deployment of AT&T's fiber optic IPTV

To complete their merger AT&T and BellSouth still need to gain
approval from the U.S. Justice Department and FCC, as well as state
authorities in Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia and Arizona.

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