It's a variation on the familiar blue AT&T globe with the company's name spelled in lowercase letters just below.
NEW YORK – The new AT&T Corp., freshly formed by SBC Communications Inc.’s purchase of its former parent company, on Monday unveiled its new corporate logo: a variation on the familiar blue AT&T globe with the company’s name spelled in lowercase letters just below.
Customers will see the new logo design with their monthly bills starting in December, but only on the envelopes. It will start appearing on the actual invoice in February.
The re-branding of SBC’s services under the AT&T name may take longer. The switch won’t be made until all legal and regulatory name-change filings are complete, the company said.
The changeover also entails replacing both the SBC logo and the old AT&T logo on 50,000 vehicles, 6,000 buildings and 40,000 uniforms and hardhats worn be employees, a process expected to take several months.
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Ceremonies to unveil the new logo on SBC’s corporate headquarters in San Antonio and the old AT&T’s base in Bedminster, N.J. were planned for Monday.
The company said the new logo was designed to look three-dimensional, “representing the expanding breadth and depth of services that the new AT&T family of companies provides to customers.”
Lowercase type was chosen for “at&t” in the logo “because it projects a more welcoming and accessible image,” the company said.
AT&T Chief Executive Edward Whitacre acknowledged that it was an emotional decision to replace the SBC brand and logo, which he worked long and hard to build as he transformed SBC from a regional phone company into one of the nation’s two dominant telecommunications players.
“It’s sad for me, but I think we’re doing the right thing for the company,” he said in an interview.
SBC, originally named Southwestern Bell Corp., was one of the regional “Baby Bells” created by the 1984 breakup of AT&T’s national monopoly on local and long-distance phone service.
The former subsidiary completed its purchase of AT&T on Friday after California officials removed the final regulatory hurdle for the $16 billion deal.
The California Public Utility Commission also gave their consent to Verizon Communications Inc.’s planned purchase of MCI Inc. for about $7.5 billion, though that deal is still awaiting approval in other states.
The two deals highlight the fading distinction between local and long-distance calling as separate services, while ushering in a new era dominated by direct competition with cable TV and wireless providers rather than among individual phone companies.
SBC also announced Friday it will assume AT&T’s longtime stock trading symbol, “T,” starting Dec. 1.
AT&T brings a national fiber-optic network and a valuable base of corporate accounts to SBC’s largely regional, consumer-oriented business. AT&T also gives SBC the international capabilities needed to serve companies with far-flung operations.