AT&T’s lust for wireless spectrum knows no bounds as the carrier today filed petitions with the Federal Communications Commission seeking various 700 MHz licenses from a handful of small license owners. The moves follow the announcement earlier today that AT&T was looking to acquire NextWave for $650 million in order to get its hands on NextWave’s various 1.7/2.1 GHz and 2.3 GHz spectrum licenses.
In the latest FCC filings, AT&T is looking to transfer a single B-Block license from McBride Spectrum Partners covering the Jefferson, Penn., cellular market area; a single C-Block license from Farmers Telephone covering the San Miguel, Colo., CMA; a pair of C-Block licenses from ComSouth Tellular covering the Macon-Warner Robins and Bleckley, Ga., CMAs; and 13 B-Block licenses from David L. Miller covering CMAs in Florida, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Texas.
Financial terms of the deals were not released.
AT&T noted that in most of the cases, the transactions would leave the carrier with 55 megahertz of total spectrum below the 1 GHz band, save for a Pennsylvania market where it would hold 61 megahertz. The FCC has in the past looked to counter spectrum deals that would congregate spectrum holdings below the 1 GHz band in the hands of larger operators.
AT&T has also reportedly put in bids to acquire 2.3 GHz spectrum licenses from Comcast and Horizon Wi-Com.
AT&T last year failed in its $39 billion attempt to purchase T-Mobile USA, which the carrier said it needed to do in order to get its hands on valuable spectrum resources. The attempt, which the government blocked due to competitive concerns, cost AT&T $3 billion in a break-up fee to T-Mobile USA parent company Deutsche Telekom and a significant chunk of its 1.7/2.1 GHz spectrum holdings.
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