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“A Giant Warning Sign” - T-Mobile Hiring of Former CenturyLink Executive Another Reminder of Jobs at Risk in Proposed Merger with Sprint

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Washington, DC – The news that T-Mobile is hiring former CenturyLink executive Sunit Patel to help oversee its proposed merger with Sprint is another disturbing indication that the merger would result in the layoffs of thousands of current employees from the two companies, the Communications Workers of America (CWA) said today. CWA represents over 11,000 workers at CenturyLink.

Patel was previously Chief Financial Officer at CenturyLink, where he helped to oversee the company’s merger with Level 3. Following that merger, CenturyLink laid off approximately 1,000 employees, two percent of its workforce, with a company spokesperson admitting that “the combination of two large companies … creates redundant positions that must be addressed to remain competitive.”

Recent analysis from CWA finds that the proposed merger between T-Mobile and Sprint, which Patel would help oversee as T-Mobile’s new Executive Vice President for Merger and Integration, would result in the loss of more than 28,000 jobs across the country. Approximately 24,000 job cuts would come from the elimination of duplicate retail stores and another 4,500 would be cut due to duplicate headquarters functions. See CWA’s analysis of the 50 metro areas projected to see the greatest total of lost jobs here.

Patel’s tenure as CFO at CenturyLink also coincided with the company’s 2017 decision to cancel its traditional Christmas bonus and its January 2018 announcement that it was suspending merit raises – all at a time when top company executives took home millions in bonuses, including a $1.3 million retention bonus issued to Patel as a result of the merger.

According to Brenda Roberts, CWA District 7 Vice President, “T-Mobile’s hiring of Sunit Patel to oversee its proposed merger with Sprint should be a giant warning sign for anyone who cares about the merger’s potential effects on American jobs. In addition to the detailed analysis showing why more than 28,000 current jobs are at risk if the merger goes through, we can add 1,000 personal stories of CenturyLink employees who have first-hand accounts of why Sunit Patel’s hire undercuts the unsubstantiated claims by the companies about what the merger would mean for their current employees.”

  • Read CWA’s August filing to the FCC, detailing its analysis of why the proposed T-Mobile/Sprint merger would result in the elimination of more than 28,000 jobs
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