Last week, the Fall 2017 CUE Conference featured a panel of experts who discussed some of the labor and employee relations issues that can arise during a merger/acquisition. Among the issues the panel told attendees they needed to watch out for included: 1) reductions in force; 2) the possibility of culture clash; 3) issues over wages, benefits, and policies; 4) union organizing arising due to uncertainty; and 5) communication issues. This week, POLITICO PRO shares a story about how the Communications Workers of America has preemptively staked out opposition to a possible merger of T-Mobile and Sprint, the third and fourth largest mobile carriers in the U.S.
These carriers have not formally announced plans to merge, but the possibility is subject to intense speculation.
Such a merger would kill 20,000 jobs, the union said in a news release today, citing that number to a 2016 analysis from analyst Craig Moffett of MoffettNathanson LLC. [Emphasis added]
“Allowing Sprint and T-Mobile to merge guarantees the loss of tens of thousands of U.S. jobs that would result from store closures and the consolidation of administrative work. Corporations and Wall Street applaud this ‘synergy,’ but employees and their families would bear all the costs of this merger,” CWA President Chris Shelton said in the statement. “The massive job loss that this merger would cause is not in the public interest. The Sprint-T-Mobile merger would enrich a few corporate owners and investors at the expense of workers and consumers.”
The union “and our consumer allies” will work to “make sure this merger never becomes a reality,” it said in its release, criticizing the carriers for their practices on closing call centers and consumer billing practices.