AT&T In Preliminary Talks to Sell Assets Report

In a move to salvage its $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile USA, AT&T has reportedly approached smaller competitors to sell spectrum and subscribers.

Dallas-based AT&T, whose merger is being jeopardized by an antitrust lawsuit from the U.S. Department of Justice, has approached MetroPCS Communications, Leap Wireless International, CenturyLink, Dish Network and Sprint Nextel in order to gauge their interest in purchasing assets, Bloomberg reported, citing two people with direct knowledge of the situation.

The unnamed sources said AT&Ts discussions with competitors are preliminary and may not lead to an agreement, and the Justice Department may consider the remedies insufficient.

The Department of Justice has filed a lawsuit to block AT&Ts purchase of T-Mobile USA, and seven state attorneys general have joined the federal government in litigation against a merger that would make AT&T the largest U.S. wireless provider and knock out T-Mobile as an independent rival to the likes of AT&T, Sprint Nextel and Verizon Wireless.

AT&T continues to defend the merger and has publicly vowed to fight the DOJ in court.

Meanwhile, the Federal Communications Commission hasnt yet ruled whether or not the merger is in the public interest.

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