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AT&T to buy Leap Wireless for $1.19 billion

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AT&T dropped an interesting bit of news this afternoon: it's going to purchase Leap Wireless in its entirety for $15 per share, which translates to roughly $1.19 billion in cash. For many, Leap is best known by its consumer-facing brand, Cricket, a prepaid wireless provider that holds nearly 5 million subscribers. In exchange, AT&T will acquire Leap's customers, retail stores and network licenses, which span 35 states across the PCS and AWS bands. Leap's stock closed at $7.98 today, but shot past $16 in after hours trading. The transaction must still be approved by Leap shareholders, and then both the FCC and Department of Justice. As it stands, 29.8% of Leap's outstanding shares are in favor of the transaction, and ever optimistic AT&T expects to wind up the deal within six to nine months. Better luck this time?

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