MetroPCS ‘Concerned’ About Spectrum Concentration in AT&T Deal

MetroPCS Communications Inc. (PCS) said the proposed $39 billion AT&T Inc. (T) purchase of T-Mobile USA risks putting too much spectrum into the hands of one carrier as data use increases on airwaves carrying mobile Internet.

“We are concerned about the concentration of spectrum that that gives AT&T,” said Braxton Carter, chief financial officer of the Richardson, Texas-based pay-as-you-go carrier. “Spectrum is the life blood of our business and that puts AT&T in a very significant spectrum position,” he said at the JPMorgan Chase & Co. Global Technology, Media and Telecom conference in Boston.

Braxton said he was confident the U.S. Department of Justice would require AT&T to divest some spectrum, the government-licensed radio frequencies used in wireless communications, as a condition of potentially approving the deal.

Sprint Nextel Corp. (S) as well as Senators Herb Kohl, a Democrat from Wisconsin and Mike Lee, a Republican from Utah, have said they were concerned about what impact the consolidation of AT&T and T-Mobile would have on the industry.

To contact the reporter on this story: Greg Bensinger in New York at gbensinger1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Peter Elstrom at pelstrom@bloomberg.net

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