MetroPCS Communications Inc. reiterated a plea for shareholders to vote for the U.S. wireless carrier’s planned combination with Deutsche Telekom AG’s T-Mobile USA unit, saying it has received no rival offers.
“No other bidders have emerged in the five months since the proposed combination was announced,” the company said today in a statement. “The proposed combination is the best alternative for MetroPCS to maximize stockholder value.”
Shareholders are scheduled to vote on the deal at a meeting on April 12. It would combine the nation’s fourth- and fifth-largest mobile-service providers and give Deutsche Telekom a 74 percent stake in the combined entity. While the merger has been cleared by regulators, two of MetroPCS’s biggest investors -- Paulson & Co. and P. Schoenfeld Asset Management -- have criticized the proposal.
P. Schoenfeld Asset Management has said that the transaction is unfair to investors by saddling the combined company with too much debt. The New York investment firm also called for MetroPCS Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Roger Linquist to step down. The picture painted by the firm is “grossly inaccurate,” MetroPCS said today.
MetroPCS rose less than 1 percent to $10.60 at the close in New York. The stock is down 22 percent since Oct. 2, when the company announced it was in talks with the German phone carrier.
Deutsche Telekom aims to use MetroPCS to help revive its U.S. business. Together, T-Mobile USA and MetroPCS will attempt to challenge Verizon Wireless, AT&T Inc. and Sprint Nextel Corp. by broadening the company’s national coverage and offering lower-priced service.
In a revamp of its service offerings, T-Mobile has begun selling a selection of no-contract plans called Simple Choice, starting at $50 a month for 500 megabytes of data and $60 for 2.5 gigabytes. The subscriptions don’t include the cost of the device. The company expects to introduce an installment plan that lets users pay for smartphones on a monthly basis over time, CEO John Legere has said.