AT&T buys Centennial for $944M

AT&T announced over the weekend that it had purchased wireless provider Centennial Communications for $944 million, further boosting its wireless coverage in rural areas, especially in the Midwest and along the Gulf Coast.

The deal--which, including the assumption of Centennial's debt--is worth about $2.8 billion and comes on the heels of AT&T's $275 million purchase of WiFi service provider Wayport.

The purchase still has to gain regulatory approval, but it should net AT&T 1.1 million of Centennial's customers in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Great Lakes region and in the Gulf Coast. The move also comes less than a week after the Federal Communications Commission approved Verizon Wireless' $28.1 billion acquisition of Alltel, which will propel Verizon past AT&T as the country's largest wireless operator. AT&T currently has close to 75 million subscribers; the new Verizon entity will have about 83 million.

For more:
- see this article
- see this WSJ article (sub. req.)

Related Article:
AT&T acquires Wayport, boosts WiFi presence
Verizon's Alltel acquisition: What are the ramifications?

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