Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski telephoned AT&T Inc.’s top executive to say the agency would move to block the company’s $39 billion purchase of a smaller rival, AT&T said in a filing.
In the Nov. 22 call, Genachowski told AT&T Chief Executive Officer Randall Stephenson that he would ask fellow commissioners to send the proposed acquisition of T-Mobile USA Inc. to a hearing before an agency judge, Dallas-based AT&T said in a Nov. 25 filing that it circulated by e-mail today.
Genachowski also called Rene Obermann, chief executive officer of T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom AG, the Bonn-based company said in a separate filing.
AT&T and Deutsche Telekom withdrew their FCC merger applications Nov. 23, according to the filings. AT&T on Nov. 25 said it plans to sue the FCC if the agency doesn’t allow the withdrawal.
AT&T’s move is “a request” that the FCC “will consider,” agency spokeswoman Tammy Sun said in an e-mailed statement Nov. 24.
The Justice Department already has sued to block the transaction as anticompetitive, with a U.S. district court trial set to commence in February.