AT&T purchased Centennial Wireless back in November 2009. As a part of the conditions to get that deal approved, AT&T agreed to divest of eight markets, most of which are in Louisiana. Today, the Centennial divestiture was completed.
Verizon Wireless agreed to buy six of the markets (117K subscribers) including Lafayette, La., LA-5 (Beauregard), LA-6 (Iberville), LA-7 (West Feliciana), MS-8 (Claiborne) and MS-9 (Copiah), for $235 million.
The two additional markets of Alexandra, La. and LA-3 (DeSoto) were sold to MTPCS d/b/a CellularOne, a Montana based GSM carrier. MTPCS was formed to purchase the wireless assets of 3Rivers Communications and Blackfoot Telecom Group in Montana, and has since expanded to Texas and Oklahoma, through another AT&T divestiture – Dobson Wireless in that case.
Centennial represents another tier 2 wireless carrier now gone to consolidation in the wireless sector. It joins a long list of similar sized carriers like Dobson Cellular, Midwestern Wireless, and Rural Cellular, all swallowed up by larger national carriers. Only a few like Cellular South and the new Allied Wireless (Alltel) remain.