No surprise here, but SBC is now AT&T as the deal has officially closed -- just a bit ahead of schedule. Almost all of the AT&T DNA has been jettisoned, and so we've basically got SBC with a more recognizable brand name and a lot more customers. Now for the countdown on how long it will take before they try to buy BellSouth. The two companies are already joined at the hip in many ways. The assumption is it would be a tough slog through the FTC to get approval for such a deal, but enough whispering is going on that at some point they're expected to try. The two companies have held merger talks in the past, with apparently BellSouth resisting overtures more than once -- but the pressure may get much stronger pretty soon. A recent prediction was that SBC would announce an acquisition of BellSouth within 24 hours of the deal closing with AT&T. The clock is now ticking... but I wouldn't hold my breath for this one just yet.
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