AT&T and T-Mobile’s corporate parent, Deutsche Telekom, acknowledged in an announcement last week that the T-Mobile acquisition by AT&T is in trouble. The companies said they had withdrawn their application to the FCC to join their cell phone operations.
The unlikely transactions means that both AT&T and T-Mobile will continue to market their products and services separately to the Hispanic consumer. The U.S. Hispanic wireless market is very competed with major players AT&T, Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile, Sprint and Metro PCS all figuring among the top 20 Hispanic market advertisers.
Torrance, CA based Conill is T-Mobile’s Hispanic Advertising agency, while New York City based Media:edge buys media for AT&T in the Hispanic market. Together, AT&T and T-Mobile spend well over $160 million annually in Hispanic advertising. A merger would probably have decreased the combined ad spend (larger bargaining power, consolidation of products).
America Movil interested?
The New York Times today cites Berge Ayvazian, a telecommunications consultant as saying that “América Móvil in Mexico is a candidate to buy T-Mobile assets. America Movil has had its TracFone unit in the United States for many years. TracFone sells a flat-rate, prepaid service called Straight Talk, which has been rapidly adding subscribers in the United States.” America Movil is owned by Mexican entrepreneur Carlos Slim. By acquiring T-Mobile, America Movil would extend its footprint to the U.S. .America Movil is the fourth largest wireless operator in the world. Its 215 million subscribers are in Latin America and the Caribbean including in Mexico, Brazil Jamaica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Peru, Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, Paraguay, Puerto Rico, Colombia and Ecuador.
America Movil’s Latin American-panregional advertising agency is MPG-Havas.