AT&T announced today that it is exiting its wireless and wireline operations in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, selling those businesses to Liberty Latin America for $1.95 billion, subject to customary closing adjustments.
The deal includes network assets, including spectrum; real estate and leases; customers, including 1.1 million wireless subscribers; as well as contracts.
As part of the transaction, approximately 1,300 current AT&T employees will move to the Liberty Latin America workforce, while AT&T will provide certain transition support functions to Liberty Latin America following close of the transaction.
Though AT&T is exiting wireless and wireline operations in the region, it will retain FirstNet responsibilities and relationships as well as DIRECTV and certain global business customer relationships.
After the deal closes, Liberty Latin America will support AT&T’s FirstNet build in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, expanding LTE coverage and capacity so first responders have the reliable, fast communications that they need. Eligible first responders subscribing to AT&T’s FirstNet services in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands will still have access to the benefits and capabilities of the FirstNet network platform, including priority and preemption.
“I’m proud of AT&T’s history in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands,” said Jose J. Davila, AT&T vice president-general manager for the region, in a prepared statement. “Our experienced and committed team members will continue to support these operations as we join Liberty Latin America. Liberty Latin America has expressed its commitment to provide high-quality communications services to the people of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.”
The transaction is subject to review by the FCC and the Department of Justice. The two companies expect the deal to close within 6 to 9 months.