Verizon willing to shed 15 percent of Alltel base to make merger happen

You've got to give a little to get a little, as they say, and giant, multinational joint ventures apparently aren't exempt from the mantra. In buttering up the ladies and gentlemen of the FCC enough to approve the takeover of Alltel, Verizon Wireless has agreed to spin off 85 markets' worth of Alltel subscribers in 18 states, which tallies up to about 15 percent of its 13 million-strong base. The move is designed to preserve competition, particularly in rural areas where some customers could suddenly find themselves with just a single carrier in town with enough signal strength to get the job done. There's still no telling whether the FCC will ultimately approve the move -- it could demand additional concessions or strike it down outright -- but it's a start.

[Via Phone Scoop]