FCC Tells Verizon To Divest 105 Markets Before Alltel Acquisition Can Be Signed Off

Verizon’s just a few steps away from becoming the top dog in the carrier race. The FCC has told the carrier it will have to divest business holdings in a total of 105 markets within 120 days to close the acquisition of Alltel (NYSE: AT), RCR reports. The FCC agreed on the 100 markets Verizon (NYSE: VZ) offered to sell off prior to the FCC’s approval <a href="FCC OKs Verizon’s $28 Billion Alltel Acquisition And Sprint-Clearwire Deal“>earlier this month and added five more markets out of 218 that were flagged as potential problems during the FCC’s vetting process. The carrier will now have to sell its various spectrum holdings, network assets and customers in all of the markets to push the acquisition through. The FCC didn’t put any conditions on the divestitures, but recommended the carrier at least consider regional, local and rural providers when making the sale. U.S. Cellular is expected to pick up some new customers and network strength in the process.