Verizon’s $6B TracFone Deal Nears FCC Approval – Report


Verizon (VZ) is closing in on regulatory approval for the proposed $6 billion acquisition of TracFone Wireless. Reuters reported that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairperson Jessica Rosenworcel is circulating an order urging commissioners to approve the deal. VZ shares fell 0.74% to close at $50.86 on November 19.

Verzion is a U.S. company that provides wireless and wireline communications services and products. The company also offers video and data services, corporate networking solutions and managed network services.

Verzion-TracFone Deal

The California Public Utilities Commission gave the deal the green light after Verizon agreed to additional consumer protection conditions. The Justice Department approved the deal in late 2020. (See Top Smart Score Stocks on TipRanks)

Verizon and TracFone have reached an agreement with California’s regulator, under which they are to provide subsidized wireless services to low-income consumers for 20 years. Currently, TracFone is one of the providers of telecommunication services under the government subsidy program, Lifeline, which covers around 1.7 million low-income subscribers.

Verizon has committed to continue supporting the Lifeline program for at least seven years. The wireless carrier has also promised to offer existing TracFone Lifeline rate plans for at least three years. Additionally, the company will retain an independent compliance officer to monitor compliance with the program.

Verizon Stock Ratings

In October, Cowen & Co. analyst Colby Synesael reiterated a Buy rating on the stock and raised the price target to $71 from $68, implying 39.60% upside potential to current levels. The price target increase follows Verizon’s delivery of solid Q3 2021 results and raised 2021 guidance. According to the analyst, Verizon is meaningfully undervalued.

Consensus among analysts is a Moderate Buy, based on 2 Buys and 5 Holds. The average Verizon price target of $59.43 implies 16.85% upside potential to current levels.

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