Who said telecom consolidation was dead? The latest buzz going around is that SBC is looking to buy AT&T -- leading to all the usual statements about a "Baby" Bell eating up Ma Bell. Such a deal wouldn't be that surprising. AT&T is still struggling, but does have a strong presence in the business market. Of course, it's not clear the deal will go through. We've heard similar rumors for years. In 2001, BellSouth was supposed to buy AT&T, and hardly a year has gone by since where the two sides haven't been rumored to be talking. The NY Times article here, in fact, says a deal was almost done in 2003, but BellSouth balked when they couldn't figure out what AT&T had that was of any value. Of course, many of us are still waiting for SBC and BellSouth to admit they've been an item for years, and only put off official "marriage" to avoid the potential regulatory hurdles. The two companies seem to be pretty much in lockstep with each other, so maybe they'll share AT&T as well. Of course, should this deal happen, it would probably kill Sprint's new MVNO deal with AT&T, since SBC (and BellSouth, of course) already have Cingular. You also have to wonder what it would do to AT&T's CallVantage VoIP offering. While SBC is gearing up to offer VoIP, it's definitely viewed more as a threat than an opportunity by some within the company.
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