T-Mobile USA has been a subsidiary of the German holding company Deutsche Telekom and T-Mobile International AG. However, in March 2011, Deutsche Telekom agreed to sell T-Mobile to the U.S.-based telecommunications holding company AT&T in exchange for cash and stock. This deal will make Deutsche Telekom one of the largest stockholders in AT&T, with an 8 percent share and the right to appoint a member to AT&T’s board of directors. The deal is expected to close sometime in 2012, pending regulatory approvals.
Based in Bellevue, Washington, T-Mobile provides voice and data communications to over 33 million wireless contract holders in the United States. T-Mobile also is a retailer of wireless devices and phones, and operates retail wireless hotspots at airports and businesses across the country. As a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom, T-Mobile has maintained its own corporate governance, run by a board of directors and its executive team, made up of a chief executive officer, chief operations officer and chief financial officer.
Dallas, Texas-based AT&T is the largest communications holding company in the world, providing data, voice, broadband and communication -- including local and long-distance phone access -- services in over 220 countries worldwide. AT&T’s website also states that they manage the world’s largest wireless network, with nearly 300,000 hotspot locations internationally. AT&T is governed by a board of directors, which is nominated by a committee based on recommendations by stakeholders and executives.
According to AT&T, the combined company of AT&T and T-Mobile will use AT&T branding and the AT&T name. Operations between the two companies are described as “complementary,” and AT&T plans to maintain the T-Mobile headquarters under the AT&T name in Washington state.
In 2011, the United States Department of Justice filed a civil antitrust lawsuit in order to prevent the AT&T-T-Mobile merger, claiming the acquisition would result in higher prices, poorer service and fewer choices as the combined company could represent a wireless telecommunications monopoly.
A writer and professional lab assistant based in Seattle, Kate Bruscke has been writing professionally about health care and technology since 1998. Her freelance clients include "The Seattle Times," KGB.com, Reading Local: Seattle, Nordstrom and MSN/Microsoft. Bruscke holds a Master of Fine Arts from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.