Menu
Report: Sprint looking at buying T-Mobile

Report: Sprint looking at buying T-Mobile

The third-largest US mobile carrier might bid for its smaller rival next year, The Wall Street Journal says

Sprint is considering an acquisition of T-Mobile US that would reduce the U.S. mobile industry to three large carriers if approved by regulators.

The country's third-largest mobile operator, which itself was acquired by Japan's SoftBank only months ago, is studying regulatory concerns and might make a bid in the first half of next year, according to a Wall Street Journal report on Friday that cited unnamed sources.

A merger of Sprint and T-Mobile would eliminate one major national competitor from the market, so it could draw fire from antitrust regulators. In 2011, the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Communications Commission shot down a proposed merger of T-Mobile and AT&T. If regulators react badly to Sprint's hints at buying T-Mobile, the bid may never happen, the Journal said.

Consumer activist groups wasted no time attacking the reported merger plan.

"The public doesn't need fewer competitors and fewer choices -- not when the wireless market already has so little competition," Free Press President and CEO Craig Aaron wrote in a statement. "As they did in blocking the merger between AT&T and T-Mobile, the FCC and Justice Department must carefully and closely scrutinize this deal and its impacts on consumers and their wallets. The public will get nothing good out of this deal."

"A stronger third-place competitor, better able to keep AT&T and Verizon in check, might sound appealing. But it's not worth the price of losing the number four competitor," said John Bergmayer, a senior staff attorney at Public Knowledge, in a blog post Friday.

A carrier with Sprint's and T-Mobile's combined weight could be a bigger rival to AT&T and Verizon Wireless, with more than 50 million postpaid subscribers, but it would still be dwarfed by the two largest carriers.

T-Mobile's market capitalization was about US$20 billion before its stock soared by nearly 9 percent following the Journal's report on Friday. The company is majority owned by Deutsche Telekom but went public earlier this year after completing its own buyout of MetroPCS, a smaller carrier. In 2011, AT&T offered about $39 billion for T-Mobile.

Stephen Lawson covers mobile, storage and networking technologies for The IDG News Service. Follow Stephen on Twitter at @sdlawsonmedia. Stephen's e-mail address is stephen_lawson@idg.com


Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags business issuesantitrustsprinttelecommunicationregulationlegalmobilegovernmentT-Mobile USAMergers and acquisitionsCarriers

Featured

Slideshows

Sizing up the NZ security spectrum - Where's the channel sweet spot?

Sizing up the NZ security spectrum - Where's the channel sweet spot?

From new extortion schemes, outside threats and rising cyber attacks, the art of securing the enterprise has seldom been so complex or challenging. With distance no longer a viable defence, Kiwi businesses are fighting to stay ahead of the security curve. In total, 28 per cent of local businesses faced a cyber attack last year, with the number in New Zealand set to rise in 2017. Yet amidst the sensationalism, media headlines and ongoing high profile breaches, confusion floods the channel, as partners seek strategic methods to combat rising sophistication from attackers. In sizing up the security spectrum, this Reseller News roundtable - in association with F5 Networks, Kaspersky Lab, Tech Data, Sophos and SonicWall - assessed where the channel sweet spot is within the New Zealand channel. Photos by Maria Stefina.

Sizing up the NZ security spectrum - Where's the channel sweet spot?
Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours

The channel came together for another round of After Hours, with a bumper crowd of distributors, vendors and partners descending on The Jefferson in Auckland. Photos by Maria Stefina.​

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours
Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland

Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland

Emerging start-up Consegna has officially launched its cloud offerings in the New Zealand market, through a kick-off event held at Seafarers Building in Auckland.​ Founded in June 2016, the Auckland-based business is backed by AWS and supported by a global team of cloud specialists, leveraging global managed services partnerships with Rackspace locally.

Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland
Show Comments