Southwestern Bell Corp. of St. Louis will buy the
Baltimore and Washington, D.C., cellular radio telephone assets of
Graphic S canning Corp. for approximately $21 million, both companies
Graphic Scanning is a Teaneck, N.J.-based telecommunications
The contract, which Graphic Scanning announced it has signed, will
enhance Southwestern Bell's June 30, $1.6 billion purchase of Metro
Media Inc.'s cellular and paging interests, according to Lew Scott, a
district manager for Southwestern Bell.
The purchase will essentially increase non-wireline partnership in
the two cities by about 10 percent, he said.
"When we buy Metro Media, we will have 54.6 percent of the
non-wireline partnership of Metro Media in Washington and Baltimore,"
said Scott. "After that goes through and after Graphic Scanning
goesthrough, we'll have another 10 percent, or 64.6 percent, of the
non-wireline companies in those markets."
In any given market, the Federal Communications Commission
approves two providers of cellular service, Scott explained: a
wireline company (that is, a telephone company) and a non-wire line
In Oklahoma City, Southwestern Bell Corp., through its
Dallas-based subsidiary, Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems, is the
wire-line company provider. However, Southwestern Bell Corp. is not
considered a wire-line company outside of the five-state area it
serves, and can therefore buy into the non-wire line provider service
companies such as Graphic Scanning and Metro Media.
Southwestern Bell Corp. serves Oklahoma, Texas, Missouri, Arkansas
"Any of the providers can be made up of several partners," Scott
Southwestern Bell is acquiring Metro Media's percentage of the
non-wire-line partnership in each of nine markets, Scott said. The
same is true of the Graphic acquisition.
He was uncertain of what employees might be taken on in the
Metro Media markets are Chicago; Boston; Washington, D.C.;
Baltimore; Worchester, Mass.; Geary, Ind.; New York City;
Philadelphia and a small interest in a company competing with
Southwestern Bell wireline service in Dallas. That asset will have
to be sold, Scott said.
Of all the Bell regional operating companies spun off in the 1984
divestiture of American Telephone and Telegraph, Southwestern Bell
appears to have taken the cellular telephone industry most seriously. …