Sprint, SoftBank start early deal talks over T-Mobile - BBG


The resumption of talks may have been triggered by an April 27th deadline passing that concluded a spectrum auction blackout period for participants to pursue deals.

Reuters reported in February that SoftBank was positioning itself for deal talks with Deutsche Telekom, which owns 64 percent of T-Mobile, once the auction was out of the way. The company's recent success under CEO John Legere has propelled T-Mobile beyond Sprint to take the place of third-largest USA carrier, and combined with their $8 billion spectrum bid, it might mean they're the one holding the cards this time around.

Deutsche Telekom hits 17-month high, up 3.7 pct at $17.33. Time will tell whether Sprint can and will play the waiting game with its potential consolidation with T-Mobile or another firm, but regardless, it seems that major changes in the wireless industry are on the horizon.

T-Mobile isn't the only company Sprint could sell to. Shortly after Sprint announced its mixed quarterly earnings in early May, the wireless carrier's Chief Executive Officer Marcelo Claure said that the company is able "to be very patient" with any possible mergers and acquisition due to the fact that it has a wide variety of options on how to proceed with those ambitions.

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And there's still the question of whether federal regulators would approve of a deal that significantly consolidates the USA wireless market.

Sprint parent Softbank named T-Mobile on 10 M ay as the "most orthodox choice".

SoftBank spent more than $20 billion to acquire Sprint in 2012, and the company had hoped to acquire T-Mobile as well, merging the carriers to take on Verizon and AT&T. Thrown into the mix could be Comcast and Charter, both of whom have indicated they want to get into the wireless market in the US and may be interested in acquiring Sprint.