Verizon Wireless agreed to buy Alltel for $28.1 billion, including $22.2 billion in debt, vaulting the combined company to first place in the U.S. mobile services market ahead of AT&T .
Verizon said the equity value of the deal would be about $5.9 billion.
Verizon Wireless, 55 percent owned by Verizon Communications and 45 percent owned by Britain's Vodafone Group, said the deal would generate savings of $1 billion in the second year after closing.
It said it expects total savings with a net present value of more than $9 billion.
The deal comes only seven months after Alltel was bought by TPG Capital and Goldman Sachs Group's GS Capital Partners for $27.5 billion. (See the accompanying Faber Report on Verizon buying Alltel)
That deal was the largest ever private equity investment in the U.S. wireless industry, but it closed amid a mounting credit crisis that has curtailed the leveraged buyout boom.
Some analysts said Verizon could be in a good position to refinance Alltel's debt at a lower interest rate; others said that a deal could also help Verizon create savings from a network and handset perspective.
Overall, analysts said, the deal made sense.
"Put simply, they can run Alltel more efficiently than Alltel can," said Bernstein analyst Craig Moffett.Page 1 of 2 | Next Page