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AT&T rejects £31 billion Comcast bid

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AT&T has rejected the unsolicited $44.5 billion (£31.5 billion) by Comcast for its broadband division, claiming the bid "did not reflect the full value of AT&T Broadband". It also said it was concerned with the large amount of voting power Comcast would command.

The surprise bid, on the same day that AT&T spun off its wireless arm, would have created the world's biggest broadband company with 22 million subscribers. Comcast said that the purchase would have saved both companies $1.25 billion a year.

Although AT&T has rejected the offer, it has clearly disturbed the telco giant, which also decided to delay mailing shareholders its final plans for restructuring. It claims it still intends to separate its consumer and business divisions from AT&T Broadband, but whether Broadband itself is spun off is now no longer a certainty.

AT&T followed Comcast's lead by posting a copy of its correspondence on its Web site here. Comcast's original offer is here.

Comcast said it was disappointed by the rejection and disagreed that the offer - which also includes the assumption of AT&T Broadband's $13.5 billion debt - was too low. It hasn't made any noises about raising the bid as yet. ®

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