Sprint wants access to confidential information in AT&T/T-Mobile filing

Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S) wants to see all of the more than 100-page document AT&T (NYSE:T) filed last week with the FCC as part of its proposed $39 billion purchase of T-Mobile USA--not just the heavily redacted version that is available to the public.

According to Bloomberg, Sprint asked the FCC to grant it access to the unedited version of the filing. Outside attorneys for Sprint signed confidentiality agreements and filed the request with the FCC yesterday. Sprint has retained the law firms of Lawler, Metzger, Keeney & Logan LLD and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP as well as consulting firm Charles River Associates to help it fight AT&T's proposed acquisition of T-Mobile USA.

AT&T redacted a range of information in its filing with the FCC, including information on its network coverage, performance and capacity.

Sprint is gearing up to do battle against AT&T and has pledged to lobby against the deal on multiple fronts, including through congressional hearings. The operator recently hired three new lobbying firms: Thorsen French Advocacy, Franklin Square Group and The Fritts Group as part of its efforts.

In addition, last week Sprint announced it would join the Rural Cellular Association as an affiliate member to be part of that group's plans to do battle with the two largest U.S. operators: AT&T and Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ). Sprint is a member of CTIA, but CTIA has come under fire for only representing the interests of the nation's two largest operators.

In AT&T's filing with the FCC, the company essentially argues why its proposed purchase of T-Mobile is in the public interest. AT&T touts many of the benefits it has noted previously, including that the deal will result in increased spectral efficiencies, fewer dropped calls and better service. AT&T also argues that the deal is the most efficient way for it to avoid exhausting its spectrum.

For more:
- see this Bloomberg article

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