Sprint Chairman and Softbank CEO, Son, said to be approaching banks to finance T-Mobile buyout

Japan Softbank  to acquire Sprint

It’s fairly old news by now that Sprint is rumored to be looking at buying T-Mobile. As we’ve already heard, it’s Softbank’s CEO that wants to push the deal through, but it’s one that many industry watchers and myself are struggling to make any sense of. The obvious questions like who’s name is going to be kept, or will it be a merger where both individual identities are kept intact, have been floated around plenty of times. But, a report today left me even more perplexed.

According to Bloomberg, Softbank’s CEO, Masayoshi Son has been approaching banks in order to raise the funds necessary to buy T-Mobile US. He’s looking to raise around $20 billion from banks, including Credit Suisse Group, Mizuho Bank, Goldman Sachs Group, Deutsche Bank and JPMorgan Chase & Co. Incidentally, these are the same banks which helped finance Softbank’s purchase of Sprint. Bloomberg’s source on this, obviously asked to remain anonymous, as any source of any rumors does.

Allegedly, Deutsche Telekom is willing to sell its stake in T-Mobile, although it has not yet held any talks with Sprint/Softbank. Son’s enquiries with the Banks are at a very early stage, and so we’re really at the very beginning of any process, and it could quite possibly end before it begins.

What really got me was a portion in Bloomberg‘s report centered on AT&T’s failed bid, and the subsequent penalty of $7 billion of cash and assets (a portion of which was a good chunk of spectrum). Son is concerned that his company could end up in a similar position, and it really can’t afford to be:

“If SoftBank and Sprint suffer the same fate, they couldn’t afford that kind of penalty, the people said. Son, who serves as Sprint’s chairman, has told banks he doesn’t want to pay a large breakup fee because the carrier is already carrying a lot of debt, said one of these people.”

In short, Sprint/Softbank is already carrying a lot of debt (owed to the banks mentioned previously), and can’t risk the deal going sour. So my question is: Why bid? It makes little sense to me that any company, particularly one struggling to be relevant in the U.S. market, already carrying debt, should try to take another company.

Sprint isn’t the only company rumored to be looking at T-Mobile. Dish has also been rumored to be after a piece of Tmo’s pie, and, that I can understand – to a point. At least with Dish Network being involved, T-Mobile could start to offer all-inclusive bundles of mobile and home communications along with satellite television.

The real question here: Is any of this ever going to come to fruition? I’m doubtful. But we’ll see in time, I’m sure.

Via: Bloomberg

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  • This is terrible news! Omg no

  • Dakota

    Wonder if the feds would be more likely to approve a Dish/Tmobile merger which would still leave 4 carriers vs a Sprint merger which would bring it down to 3 main carriers, even though it would still be a smaller one. Consolidation seems inevitable, especially with limited resources so Tmobile is going to be a major takeover target until it sells out

  • rfgenerator

    Me thinks that T-Mobile is a dead man walking, either gobbled up by Sprint/Softbank or Dish. If it’s Sprint/Softbank we can once again in front the acquisition look at a freeze or even cutbacks on CAPEX. Customer service will again be gutted. It’s the way the broken system of American capitalism works. At the end less competition, lots of layoffs, return of contracts, kiss free international roaming goodbye and look for increasing prices.

  • Js__

    As long as John Legere is allowed to be acting CEO, no one should see a problem with this.

    • Dakota

      You do know that CEOs serve at the pleasure of the board. If a corporation wants to change its strategy, they will get rid of their CEO.

  • Adrayven

    Dish isn’t in any carrier game and I hope it stays that way. I hate their packaging tactics, I hate their support services, their overall not a good idea and I can see them totally screwing over the momentum John has built.

    Sprint. I’ve a soft spot for since I tend to root for underdogs, but even then, a buyout/merger simply does not make sense. They have yet to prove themselves after Softbank.. As a bank, I’d be stand-offish until they’ve shown honest turnaround.

    Plus, regulators are likely to look very badly on #3 and #4 merger.. They clearly wanted this a 4 horse race.. I don’t think that will change this time around either.

  • Mark Reese

    Why not direct tv

    • Henry

      They are partnered up with AT&T

  • hanfeedback

    Sprint is the worst thing that could happen to Tmobile.

  • JohhnyBGood

    dammit just when Magenta’s future is lucking better than ever these Sprint idi ots with the worst network want their cake too. Not sure if a hostile take over is possible the way DT owns T-Mobile USA.Hope they go to hell.

  • macman37

    The only spectrum that Sprint/Softbank has, which T-Mobile would be interested in, is the 1900 PCS spectrum; other than that, a merger of Sprint and T-Mobile would be a big integration mess of different spectrums similar to when Sprint acquired/merged with Nextel. The only reason why Deutsche Telekom and T-Mobile should consider Sprint/Softbank’s offer is due to if they know that they would be getting a payout if this possible acquisition fails. Although the Dish Network is planning to acquire some 1900 PCS spectrum in an upcoming auction, and planning to pair it with one of their other frequencies, one as a download and the 1900 PCS spectrum as possibly the upload or download, T-Mobile should consider an offer from the Dish Network more than Sprint, due to T-Mobile being able to do the same pairing plan that the Dish Network intends to do. Considering an offer from the Dish Network more than Sprint would also make more sense, because the Dish Network also has some 700 MHz Block E spectrum to help with rural areas and obstacle/in-building penetration.

    • maximus1901

      1 – forgetting 2.5GHz? Yes, WiMax failed but that was because they didn’t have enough money to build towers at high density.
      2 – DT doesn’t care what happens to TMO after it sells it to whomever. TMUS CEO, CFO, etc don’t get a vote on DT’s decision to sell.
      3 – Dish’s 700 MHz block E is supplemental downlink i.e. one-way only.

      • KingCobra

        2.5Ghz for all intents and purposes is junk spectrum. It has capacity but requires towers to be built very close together. Now the 850mhz from Nextel is useful.

        • maximus1901

          China mobile – 700 million subs – just finished spending billions on a TDD LTE network using 130 MHz of 2.5ghz.
          Yes it requires high base station density but in urban areas, that’s an advantage because of capacity constraints. And if you’re out of range, you’d fall back to pcs LTE or 800 MHz LTE.

  • cray820

    A sprint merger is a eminent disaster. It makes no sense especially after softbank admitting to be in high debt. Sprint can’t afford to maintain two different networks nor can they afford to merge the networks. The whole thing reeks of debt.

    • maximus1901

      Admitting . . . it’s in their publicly available financial statements .. . available on the Sprint investor site. This isn’t a new revelation.
      They’re going to eventually merge the networks using Sprint’s shiny new software-defined base-station radios.

  • TmoMan79

    I can see a huge problem in this merger. First off, Sprint or Tmo would have to re farm their entire 3G/4G network because Sprint is CDMA and Tmo is GSM. That would create a huge problem. And Sprint runs LTE on the 1900 mHz PCS band and T-Mobile runs it on the 1700 AWS band. Most T-Mobile phones do support the 1900 PCS band so at least they might be able to make that work. I think having four wireless carriers is the best way of keeping prices low and don’t think that they really need to merge as it would just be a disaster without much benefit.

    • maximus1901

      You can run different technologies simultaneously on the same band.

  • Lagurl323

    i swear if that happens for reals if they do approve it ,i will take my two tmobile lines to either att or verizon.

  • Don Kim

    T-Mo didn’t sell itself to AT&T and survived and made a huge stride this year.
    Why the heck would T-Mo sell itself to freakin’ Sprint now? A company they’re set to surpass easily next year.
    I don’t see it happening.

    • Right. It’s not gonna happen, just like with AT&T. The only reason they are trying to buy them, is because they realize that T-Mobile is growing fast. Sprint will be in 4th place next year, easy.

    • SouthernBlackNerd

      I am starting to think this whole thing is BS and that these rumors have been started by an investor trying to pump up the stock before they sell it or even Sprint trying to pump up the stock to make the price more expensive for DISH, who still needs a network for their spectrum.

      If Son really wanted to buy TMUS, then why announce it. TMUS stock has gone from 25 dollars a share to around 31 dollars a share now. Son has to know that all this new is costing him billions if he was actually interested in the deal.

      Also look at the Sprint-Softbank deal. That deal came out of nowhere. We did not even get rumors until the day before the deal was announced as being official. Plus the article even states that two people in DT have not held talks with Son or Sprint. Makes no sense to get the cash before the deal is even written down.

      • maximus1901

        He didn’t announce it. There’s probably hundreds of people who know this. Maybe he leaked it on purpose. But there’s been no official press release.

        • SouthernBlackNerd

          Hundreds of people?!?! You really think companies have hundreds of people with knowledge of a deal that does not exist? The article even states that they have not contacted DT. Where were these hundreds of people when the Sprint-Softbank deal was being done behind close doors? Son is a smart man. If he was actually going to make a move, then he would not let the public know about it until it was already done. There would be no leaks like the Sprint deal.

          If they are actually behind these leaks, then I think Son and Co are trying to give Dish a taste of their medicine for costing Softbank and Sprint so much with the Sprint/Clearwire deals respectively.

      • KingCobra

        You might be right. Sprint and TMUS stock both have been surging since this rumor began.

    • maximus1901

      Deutsche Telekom TRIED to sell itself to ATT but DOJ, FCC said no.
      DT wants to sell so it can invest in wired VDSL2 in Germany.

  • S. Ali

    I don’t understand why they would buy T-mobile when they could just as easily implement their own “uncarrier” plan. Sprint has more customers, they are deploying LTE in a wider area (i.e rural markets), they have 3x more spectrum, and they carry two major low-cost brands (Virgin/Boost). Sprint would waste billions just in the transition that it wouldn’t be worth the small spectrum gain in the long-run. Not to mention the FCC would not let them hold that much spectrum (they would have to give up most of it to Verizon and ATT including GSM equipment).

    • paul

      plus sprint sucks. Main reason.

    • maximus1901

      1 – network cost savings: Sprint would eventually retire TMO’s network equipment and move the HSPA+/LTE onto their own basestations, thereby decreasing OPEX.
      2 – scale: having more customers means more “heft” when dealing with Samsung et al in phone purchases
      3 – transition to 3GPP aka GSM-path: Softbank wants Sprint to move away from CDMA because that’d reduce phone costs. Without additional spectrum, Sprint can’t do this but by buying TMO, this effort is jump-started.

    • KingCobra

      Because Sprint is terrible right now and T-Mobile is stealing tons of their customers. It’s more difficult for Sprint to implement an uncarrier plan being a CDMA network. There is no bring your own unlocked device to a CDMA network. While Sprint is still working on their Network Vision project, they know they stand to lose tons more subscribers to T-Mobile and this would pretty much be them buying those customers right back.

  • princedannyb

    I wish tmobile would buy us cellular and windstream. If you are not familiar with windsream take a look at this map http://www.windstream{DOT}com/About-Us/Coverage-Map/ this would add 39mhz to the green areas. And my town (citra, fl) has windstream.

    • princedannyb

      I should say fiber not spectrum.

  • Sprint is Crap

    If Sprint buys TMO, you can kiss my happy tmobile customer A** goodbye. Sprint is the worst at just about everything. Verizon is where I will go

    • maximus1901

      You’re gonna go from the cheapest carrier to the most expensive?

  • GinaDee

    We don’t need the Japanese to own so much of our wireless industry and infrastructure.

    Sprint sold out due to poor planning, poor management, poor execution and a botched purchase of Nextel. The once proud American icon of a company surrendered to a foreign billionaire in such a passive manner.

    If our beloved company is going to be sold I want it to be sold to an American investor. Anyone with me? Once the Germans let go of their underinvested US subsidiary I’d like it under full American ownership.

    • D Velasquez

      as far as i know SoftBank went from been an underdog to be up there with au KDDI and Docomo(this one carrying half of Japan’s population) when they bought Vodafone Japan then renamed SoftBank Mobile Corp. so care to explain how SoftBank is a clown of a company? i would understand if you say Willcom which uses PHS(which was eventually bought by SoftBank) or eMobile but SoftBank itself? i don’t think so, Sprint is another story though….

      • GinaDee

        Nowhere did I say Softbank was a clown of a company but even if I thought it what does it matter?

        Softbank is interested in helping Softbank’s shareholders. All their experience in the tiny country of Japan is nothing on the scale needed to fix/modernize and rejuvenate our US wireless industry. Can they help Sprint? Yes because Sprint is the worst disaster in wireless. Money from Wal-Mart, Target or Baby’s R US could have done the same.

        There is no way in hell that it’s in the interest of American consumers for a Japanese business tycoon with deep pockets to buy our #3 and #4 wireless players. Let him keep Sprint. The rest of us don’t want to be assimilated into the borg.

        • maximus1901

          Then raise $20bil to buy TMO from an American tycoon with deep pockets. Did DT rebuff a reasonable offer from an American corp?

          Why are you against foreign investment? You spout the same thing at s4gru com
          Are you somehow invested in the auto industry and had someone lose their job from those foreign Japs? (proud owner of a made-in-Japan early 2000s Corolla)

          Or maybe we should become like Canadia and block all investments in telecom? Lookup Canadian prices and you’ll think the Duo are saints.

          “Interests of American consumers” – that’d be good service at competitive price? I’d like TMO to remain independent but . . . I think Softy would provide good service at competitve price.

        • Jon

          Companies are all about making money so it is the same anywhere in the world investors naturally expect huge returns. Son is a competent businessman. He saw sprint as a good investment. Now I agree Sprint is in shambles but it could be turned around. Tmobile was always the underdog and now that they are doing well everyone lost faith in Sprint. I’m not for Sprint and SoftBank buying Tmobile but at least give the guy a chance to turn Sprint around. Tmobile did and I’m certain Sprint could too under the right leadership of course.

    • superg05

      not to mention that most of that money will flow over seas

      • maximus1901

        You’re right, that’s horrible. Let’s have every country ban all international investment and erect trade barriers . . . oh wait that has been proven to never ever work out well . . . for the country erecting trade barriers.

    • maximus1901

      This isn’t the 1950s. I guess you must own a Moto X since it’s the only phone manufactured in America?

      • FluX

        Maybe you should keep your “know-it-all” comments aside and let people express their opinions.

        • maximus1901

          Do I have the power to delete anyone’s comments?
          Ruffled your feathers cause I know more facts?

        • FluX

          Not really because there is a thing called the freedom of speech. That probably blew your feathers off, not ruffled them.

        • philyew

          A freedom of speech which – whether you agree with him or not – maximus1901 must share….

      • GinaDee

        I fail to see the relevance to the discussion of selling T-Mobile to the Japanese.

        Why doh’t you take your boat from Tokyo and meet me here in California when you have some time to discuss.

        • maximus1901

          “If our beloved company is going to be sold I want it to be sold to an American investor. ”
          My comment is on point.
          You want an American company to own TMO; me too but if there’s no one available . . .
          Why does it matter if Tmobile is owned by Softy? Were you this vocal about DT owning TMO?
          What about VZW? Were you angry that 45% of the dividends were going to a British company?

    • bucdenny

      At least the Japanese is willing to invest into the network to compete with the big 2 compared to the existing investment by just overlaying HSPA sites with LTE.

      Again speaking of Sprint management poor planning is irrelevant. It is not easy maintaining a 39000+ site network and building a brand new 39000+ site network simultaneously. You don’t see T-Mobile doing just that.

      • fsured

        Tmobile didn’t need to build a new network. They evolved the technology they were and are using in HSPA+. It saved money and they can still upgrade the HSPA+ far beyond what it is now.

        • x646x

          That must be why the vast portion of their network is still 2G Edge.

        • fsured

          Really? Unless you are new to the forums, someone who does not follow what is going on, or just trying to make a quick mocking jab, you should know that statement is false. It has been discussed by the users in the forums and tech articles on why the company can’t snap their fingers and make their 2G coverage areas 4G. If they could it would already be done.

          They have 2G Edge only coverage areas because they don’t have the spectrum in these locations to launch 3g, HSPA+, or LTE. Without the signal ability in the spectrum the network is useless and not cost efficient to upgrade yet. The towers in 2G areas will be upgraded when the company figures out how to deal with the spectrum issue. That could be gaining it somehow, re-purposing their 2G coverage and splitting it to allow HSPA+/LTE, or maybe spectrum/network sharing agreements with regional players. Until the company makes their plans known we don’t know.

        • philyew

          Are you counting physical geography or population?

          37,000 out of approximately 54,000 towers that make up the TM network are upgraded to deliver at least HSPA+ and they are located in service areas where 229 million reside. That’s 72% of the population.

          It’s a matter of fact that these numbers are concentrated in small geographic areas with extremely high population density. TM targets these areas because of the high potential for customer growth and the cost-effective way that infrastructure can be provided.

          If you want nationwide high-speed coverage now, go to one of the big duo, with their higher prices and twice the number of subscribers, who can afford the spectrum and infrastructure to fill out all the areas where population density is a fraction of the urban areas. Or write to TM and tell them you are willing to pay AT&T/Verizon prices so they can afford to accelerate their network modernization into the 2G areas.

      • GinaDee

        Invest in or control?

        • bucdenny

          its all about making money. If Sprint/T-Mobile is worth 40 billion combined, and lets say both are profitable, it maybe worth over 100 billion in 3-5 years. It is an investment. Verizon went through this, they are worth over 100 billion now.

    • Nearmsp

      Did you know Verizon wireless was owned 49% until this year by a UK company? Or for that matter German T-mobile still is the majority owner of T-mobile USA? If Americans would save even a tenth of the Asians or Germans, Americans could own many more companies. That said, it is a global world where shareholder interests come before national interests. If anything being owned by a European company helped T-mobile customers in that NSA was not able to just snoop on 100% calls like it demanded of AT&T and Verizon wireless. So yes, there are more hazards to being American owned. There is very little regulation. European companies behave a bit more ethically towards its customers because there are ombudsmen in every industry who severely punish unethical behavior towards its customers. So there well trained before they come to the US. Here we have toothless political hacks sittings as commissioners on FCC, FTC etc., and are the fox guarding the hen house.

      • GinaDee

        No sorry spare me the lecture on American capitalism and exceptionalism.

        There is ZERO need for a Japanese billionaire to own TWO of the largest wireless providers here in the United States. That is too much controlled interest in our national infrastructure under his roof.

        Tell me how that would benefit American consumers who buy and pay for these services.

        Comparing Vodafone’s passive role in Verizon Wireless to DT is comical at best. I won’t even go there.

        • x646x

          This isn’t the 60’s or prior, those that are wealthy today do not invest in nation-building as they once did and with pride. Heck, back then they even paid close to a 90% tax rate, to build this very nation and have it lead the world.

          Today, they just build their trust-funds and investment portfolios, they offshore production to 3rd world or communist countries to save a buck, and ask for even more tax cuts, to contribute even less to this country.

          “exceptionalism”? Don’t make me laugh, we rank close to dead last in everything relating to quality of life and ironically competition. I won’t embarrass anyone by listing what tmobile subscribers pay in the UK market.

          “American capitalism and exceptionalism” have created monopolies in almost every single sector, all to the benefit of the few and at the expense of the American people.

        • Nearmsp

          You are trying to now change your argument to a “Single Japanese” owner after I pointed out UK, German ownership of US wireless companies. All I am saying is that your foreign control argument has no legs. All I see is your faint hint of racism against an Asian country as opposed to a European – German or UK company.

    • x646x

      No offense but Americans have proven to be unable to run things like the wireless industry, aviation, auto manufacturing etc etc etc. Because of our short-sighted and profit by cutting costs to the bone (i.e. zero investments) while increases prices, we are ranked close to dead last in every one of these industries. In fact, our wireless sector is one of the least competitive and most overpriced in the developed world.

  • cameo

    “The obvious questions like who’s name is going to be kept …”
    Well, maybe Sprint would do what Cingular did after buying out AT&T: drop the Sprint name and keep the internationally known T-Mobile name. The only question is: would the German parent agree to it?

    • maximus1901

      Softbank would have to pay licensing fee to DT for the right. Why would they do that? Because “Sprint sucks”? Consumers have short memory. Once Sprint is done with Network Vision in summer 2014, covering 250million with LTE . . . it’ll be a new ball-game for SPrint.

      • KingCobra

        “Once Sprint is done with Network Vision in 2017”

        • maximus1901

          Go to s4gru com and you’ll see that Sprint’ll be done everywhere by summer 2014.

        • The G.O.A.T

          Let me break it down for you sprint troll. This is a T-Mobile fan site, we’re not interested in sprint, s4gru dot come, network vision, yoshi-son, and most important we’re not interested in hearing from you. Go back to your sprint fanboy site.

        • maximus1901

          This article is about sprint buying Tmobile. It was stated that because if sprint’s currently crappy network, said buyout is ill advised. I presented evidence to the contrary (kinda).
          Problem?

  • Skip Bradfield

    I would rather AT&T step in and try to buy us rather than either one of these 2 clown companies takeover magenta. TMO is the loser in either scenario, the only winner is DT; they get their cash back. Mr. DOJ, FCC, and all interested parties, please stop the madness and let T-Mobile continue it’s Uncarrier approach to wireless dominance here in the U.S. This is the best change any of us have seen literally since the launch of wireless telecommunications here in North America, T-Mobile is the dominant force and if the 700MHZ spectrum scenario comes to fruition, TMO will be in the drivers seat!

  • hellno

    I work for tmobile…please, please GET THE EFF AWAY FROM US SPRINT. I could deal with the ATT buy out and working for that company, although it has its pitfalls, at least it had its crap together, sprint…sprints just plain TERRIBLE.

    • maximus1901

      You have a less superficial reason than everyone else here for not wanting Sprint to buy you: the inevitable reductions in employees.
      Me, I just want cheap unlimited data to remain and TMO disappearing would reduce pressure on Sprint to keep it.

    • x646x

      Sprint treats their reps well and their CS is ranked very highly, second to Verizon.

  • FluX

    “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

    ~George Santayana

    • maximus1901

      It’s different than with Nextel. iDEN was a completely different system than GSM, CDMA. If they merge, Sprint’s new shiny basestations can, I think, be provisioned to do HSPA+ cause they’re software-defined base-bands.

      They’d also have to add panels capable of doing LTE on AWS band and that’s it.

  • mloudt

    I think it’s adamant that T-mo is going to do some kind of deal with either Sprint or Dish. I think overall the main issue people have with them working with Dish is Dish buying them out all together. I would rather see T-mo do another reverse merger where DT sells some of its stock and maybe Dish also buys all of Metro shareholders stock and Dish becomes the minority owner where DT remains the majority owner still making the final decisions in T-mo US. If you like this idea thumbs up the comment and if you rather deal with Sprint thumbs down it. I don’t want nothing to do with Sprint.

    • FluX

      Wait this confuses me. Both DirecTV and Dish?

      Sounds good though!

      • mloudt

        DT stands for deust. telecom not direct tv maybe that helps lol.

        • FluX

          Ooh thanks!

    • maximus1901

      Why would Dish remain the minority holder?

      • mloudt

        Even though DT supposedly now owns 67% I guess it went down due to them selling stock to raise that money. But, at the time of Metro reverse merger DT had 74% and Metro 26%. So lets say for the purpose of my example these numbers were still in place. Dish could buy 23% stock from DT. Then, Dish could buy out all of Metro stock. So 23 + 26 = 49% thus making DT still majority owner at 51%.

        • maximus1901

          Why would Dish WANT to be the minority shareholder? How would that benefit Dish?
          Legere and his team are not tied to DT but to TMUS. They wouldn’t disappear just because DT sells its stake.

    • Yes, I would rather it be a “merger” than a buyout. T-Mobile is going in a great direction, they don’t need NOBODY to take them over and run them into the ground. As they said, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

  • Eric

    If you don’t want to pay a large breakup fee, Son, don’t attempt to buy T-Mobile.

    • maximus1901

      I’m actually hoping that Sonny-boy attempts to buy TMO, gets rejected by FEDs and TMO gets ANOTHER $3bil cash lol.
      TMO’s new motto would be: “TMO LTE, brought to you by ATT and Sprint” lol

      • mloudt

        Article said 7 billion this time not 3.

        • maximus1901

          With ATT it was $3bil cash and some spectrum.

        • mloudt

          Yea and my point is you said another 3 billion cash lol the article said 7 billion so this time it would be more.

        • maximus1901

          Why would it be more? There’s no rule that says “the breakup fee must be more than the breakup fee that the previous guy paid me”.

          Furthermore, the breakup fee is related to the purchase price. ATT’s price was $39bil while Softy’s looks to be $20bil.

          Sure it COULD be more if DT demanded it but DT wants to sell above all else.

        • mloudt

          I’m basing it off what the article says I’m not making up 7 billion it’s written in the article that’s where I got it from.

        • maximus1901

          I hope it’s $10bil and the merger gets killed lol.
          TMO LTE expanded to 280 million!

        • philyew

          I’ve seen no comments from DT on this, so have to assume that the $20 billion being bandied around is the analyst’s interpretation of Sprint’s own valuation, based on market cap. MarketWatch reports the current Cap at $18.3bn, while other sources have it as high as $24.8 bn.

          It’s hard to know whether DT would bite on a valuation of this order. Their original investment in Voicestream and the other components of TM was $55bn in purchase price and assumed debt.

          As others have pointed out, TMUS is one of the success stories for DT at the moment, and a completed exit for $20bn might not look so attractive right now. Things have certainly changed dramatically since they were willing to sell to AT&T. Aside from the almost 50% drop in suggested valuation, there is no mention of what position would be afforded DT in relation to the new organization (AT&T offered an ongoing financial stake), but most of all TM was at a technological dead-end, without the spectrum and funds to make the essential leap to LTE. The AT&T break up settlement changed all that.

          While DT probably still seek an exit from this market, they are certainly positioned much better to seek the best possible deal in the circumstances.

        • maximus1901

          Maybe they’re cutting their losses?
          Softy would be paying 20bil for 67% of TMUS stock, not 100%. That means TMUS would be valued at 20/.67 = 30bil, a healthy 50% premium to current 20-24bil.

        • philyew

          It’s unlikely DT are actually losing money at the moment. TM is growing for the first time in several years, and it has been able to fund future network plans by raising finances from a common stock issue and the sale of senior notes. While their share valuation dropped temporarily after the stock dilution, it quickly recovered and continued its steady uptick. Since going public, share prices have risen from around $17 to a three month average of $26, with a further spurt to $31 after the recent announcements. DT will be drawing a decent revenue from all of this, so there will be no losses to cut.

          Given the FCC and DoJ stated positions during the AT&T takeover attempt, it is unlikely that this deal would get a free ride from federal authorities. They both expressed concerns that would apply equally to any market consolidation down to three major providers.

          With that in mind, what chance would there be of DT entering a sale process without there being the kind of break-up clause that Softbank is wary of?

          As a prospect to hang your hat on, a Sprint takeover just doesn’t look all that convincing at the moment.

          While the idea of failure with a break up penalty looks superficially attractive, the last time that happened TM had zero momentum to halt while the 12-month process unfolded. This time they are on a roll, and I would hate to see the current raft of changes tied up while the process was worked through.

  • JB

    20 billion? Sounds like SoftBank is low-balling even if this deal was on the table. AT&T was offering *much* more and T-Mobile wasn’t nearly as stable then!

    • maximus1901

      1 – ATT was willing to pay that much in order to get rid of its only GSM competitor, not because TMO was worth that much.
      2 – Soft-Sprint would be buying DT’s 67% stake, valuing TMO at $20bil/.67 = $30 bil or a 50% premium to its current stock price.

      • JB

        Semantics. Doesn’t change the fact it was still more.

        • maximus1901

          What? Sprint doesn’t need to buy 100% of TMUS to control it. Verizon owned 55% of VZW and Vodafone got no say in anything operationally.
          DT owns 67%;
          Softbank may pay $20bil for that stake;
          that would value TMUS at 20/.67 = $30 bil

          Change what fact that what is more? . . . .?

  • JBrowne1012

    2 turds trying to buy t-mobile and match the crappiness of their network to t-mobile’s why can’t deustche telekom man the eff up and just not try to sell t-mobile? Trying to sell t-mobile further leads people to believe that T-mobile isn’t going to be around for long when t-mobile would be a great competitor if it just got more coverage all round.

    • maximus1901

      When TMO bought MetroPCS, Metro shareholders forced Deutsche Telekom to agree to an 18-month period during which it would be unable to sell its TMUS stock (unless it could sell it all at once).
      Why do you think Metro investors wanted this? Because they knew that Deutsche Telekom wants to sell as soon as possible.

      Man up? This is about billions of dollars. No one cares about manning up.

      • FluX

        We really need Deutsche Telekom to keep T-Mobile alive. I would rather have Dish merge with T-Mobile in the end rather than have some monopolizing Japanese tycoon swallow up two of our USA networks, make them rubbish, and remove all the evolution that we have made.

        Softbank, get out of the USA deals. You already messed up the industry buying Sprint.

        • maximus1901

          What benefit does DT provide to TMUS by owning 67% of it vs DT selling its 67% on the open market when the 18 month lockup expires?

        • Tom C

          Buying all of it means buyer has to buy out the whole company pretty much which most likely means a higher price instead of DT dumping it on the market for individual investors where stock price would probably go down.

  • superg05

    where is my comment loser mod it was not spam during the at&t attempted takeover consumers wrote thousands of letters to the chairman i simply posted a link to the fcc contact page it in no way is even close to being Spam

    • maximus1901

      They don’t like links because links are usually spam. Chillax.

      • superg05

        but they did’nt even take the time to look at it it was obvious

        • Chris

          Dude, it’s a weekend. Chill. A mod will get to it later.

    • philyew

      It’s always been the case that posts containing links automatically go into a moderation queue. Depending on the day-of-week and time of day they are posted, some may take longer than others to appear.

      That said, I don’t think Cam checks the queue as often as David used to, or he may be filtering out all posts with links by choice. I certainly posted a few links recently and gave up waiting for them to appear.

      I now post any comments I wish to make and add a link, where needed, as a reply to my own post. That way the discussion flow continues with or without the link.

      It might help to make a statement about this, Cam.

      • princedannyb

        Next time replace the . with {DOT} thats what i do.

        • philyew

          …or that ;-)

  • JBrowne1012

    Google should buy T-mobile I know I know a pipe dream but still… Google Mobile needs to happen.

    • maximus1901

      And alienate the other 3 carriers? Goodbye Android in America.

      • Bruce Banner

        I’m guessing you’re the new resident troll of the site. You keep replying to everyone as if your opinion matters. Be gone troll, I command thee.

        • maximus1901

          Nothing coerces to come to this site.

        • Bruce Banner

          I’ve been coming here since the beginning, your user name on the other hand isn’t familiar. Don’t come around trolling with sh it that’s as useless as you. Noob loser.

        • maximus1901

          You could just ignore my comments. That’d be the adult thing to do.

    • sahib102 .

      I for one would hate that idea of google owning T-Mobile ..if that were to happen I would no see anymore windows phone in their already scares lineup and I can assume that they would only have android :/

      • Eric

        You say that like it is a bad thing..

      • fsured

        If this were to happen then it would be stupid to stop selling other phones. It is still a business, they need profits, and people buy other devices. They would lose customers.

      • JBrowne1012

        Not necessarily though they could still have all mobile Os’s but IMO wp8.1 sucks sure nokia brings partially good features to them but WP is too plain boring and it shows in the market percentage the dominant contenders are iOs and Android. If WP was going anywhere it would have been there by now. That Tiles thing.. Most people don’t even like it on their computers.

        • sahib102 .

          not going to start a debate here :P but so far it has been taking off sure slowly but world wide wp8 has already double digits but the only market where they don’t have much success is the US. and IMO wp is not boring its a new thing that people do wonder what it is and actually like it and also I have to disagree with the live tiles on computes I see lots of people that like windows 8 and 8.1 so its pointless to say ” OH I have seen this when I see it differently”

  • Michael

    Funny how a lot of people are hating on T-Mobile and all, but the reason why T-Mobile has these coverage issues is because they don’t have enough customers to provide the kind of revenue that will enable them to gradually eliminate most of the dead zones by greatly increasing the number of towers they use. So if large numbers make the switch, their coverage will likely improve with time as they become financially able to set up more towers…but large numbers may not switch until the coverage improves. (which is like another version of “which came first? the chicken or the egg?”

    • Bud

      if you build it they will come.

    • KingCobra

      It’s not as if they can just build towers coverage improves. They need spectrum first. Spectrum is limited and they have to either buy it from other carriers or wait for the FCC to auction some. Right now T-Mobile’s issue is that they don’t have any low frequency spectrum to help increase rural coverage and building penetration.

      • Dakota

        People need to realize many if the other changes like no contracts & subsidies can easily be copied. The other CEO have said that all along. ATT recently said it will probably end subsidies too. The main barrier to people switching, from what I can tell, is still coverage

        • maximus1901

          Tmo is actually expanding LTE to their previously 2g only areas. Look on sensorly at Saginaw, MI. Shows 3G an LTE but on TMO’s maps still only shows 2g. They’re improving if only slowly.

        • TylerCameron

          When they have a tower go down or something of that nature, it automatically gets upgraded to 3G/”4G”/LTE.

        • Fabian Cortez

          True statement.

        • Fabian Cortez

          This is correct. Along with that LTE comes PCS (1900MHz HSPA+).

        • philyew

          It’s a slow process though, compared with the pace of their network modernization and LTE roll-out. In the last year they have extended 4G HSPA+ service to markets covering an additional 4 million POPs. In December 2012 they covered 225 million POPs and it is now 229 million.

        • maximus1901

          How do you know they’re going all out? With this potential buyout, may not make sense

        • philyew

          They are clearly not going all-out. However, since they set out their network modernization plans in great detail for bringing HSPA+ to PCS and LTE to AWS and there is nothing published beyond that right now, it is highly unlikely that they have a structured program in place to bring upgrades to the ~17,000 remaining towers, which were not upgraded in the previous modernization program.

        • maximus1901

          From an iterview I read on fiercewireless, I think – my opinion – that once TMO upgrades 225mil to LTE on AWS (and HSPA+ pcs), they’re only gonna expand LTE past that using 700mhz.
          On TMO’s 3q investor presentation, they hav a slide stating “2014: 225 mil LTE”.
          Makes me sad If it means what I think it means: to get rural coverage, we’ll have to buy new phones since no phone supports band 12 today.

      • Alex Zapata

        I’m almost positive that TMO has a nationwide AWS license, and deploying on their current PCS EDGE network wouldn’t be overly difficult. What becomes problematic is backhaul to more rural areas, even if it’s by microwave.

        • maximus1901

          How did sprint manage to get backhaul to their rural areas? Cause they opened their checkbook and paid for it.

        • Alex Zapata

          I don’t think I ever debated that….

        • Uxorious

          The problem with AWS for rural areas is that the range is not large enough, so the capital expenditure needed to cover a large (and largely unpopulated) area is prohibitively expensive. They really need low frequency spectrum before rural expansion is feasible.

        • Alex Zapata

          Oh no, I completely understand that. However, since PCS has fairly similar range they could at least start using that spectrum that they paid a lot of money for. I realize that that’s a lot of money, not to mention a fun real estate game, but I’m just grouchy TMO customer at times.

      • maximus1901

        Let’s clear something up here: carriers RARELY EVER BUILD NEW TOWERS!
        TMO owned 7k towers but then sold them for $2.4B
        ATT just sold some 10k towers for $4-ish bil
        Sprint owns no towers
        Verizon not sure

        The actual owners of the towers are American Towers, Crown Castle, etc
        On any given tower, 4-5 carriers can fit their antennas and basestations and space is leased by each carrier.

        The reason why TMO’s 3g/4g coverage sucks is NOT because of some lack of towers. Take a look at TMO’s GSM coverage: it’s pretty good. TMO doesn’t have 3g/4g on THOSE towers because that requires fiber backhaul to each 3g/4g tower; that’s expensive and takes SOOOO much time. That’s why Sprint has taken so long to upgrade its towers.

        • philyew

          A small correction, if I may, the deals Crown Castle did with TM and AT&T were both term-limited agreements to lease and operate the towers. The terms of which were around 28 years.

          Crown Castle made an interesting announcement last week in light of the Sprint rumors. They stated that they had 8,000 towers on which Sprint and TM both have equipment. The remaining leases on these towers are said to be 6 years for Sprint and 8 years for TM.

          I do think that, in addition to the cost of providing backhaul, there will also be areas where they don’t have sufficient spectrum.

          Right now though it makes more sense for them to concentrate their investment on the larger MSAs. They have 45 million customers. The areas where they already provide 4G service cover 229 million POPs. That’s a potential growth ceiling of 184 million.

          Meanwhile, the areas where they don’t have 4G offer a growth ceiling of just 87 million. Because the cost of bringing coverage in rural areas on a head-for-head basis is far more expensive, the relative value of targeting new customers in the larger MSAs is even greater than the 2:1 ratio suggested by a simple population comparison.

  • SM-900T

    Bottom line is, these kinds of rumors have been going on for 8+ years. The FCC & DOJ have made it abundantly clear that they want 4 major wireless carriers. Sprint will never buy T-mobile because it will never be allowed by regulatory decision makers. dish may not run into the same roadblocks, but it will still be years before anything is finalized, whats everyone so worried about? TmoUS isn’t going anywhere.

    • fentonr

      I agree, the problem is that FCC and DOJ heads change some what regularly. I don’t think they will until there is a new president, so we have a while still…but it doesn’t mean that policy and personal can’t change.

  • 30014

    I hope like hell neither sprint nor dish gets their hands on T-Mobile. If it happens I may end up leaving if I can’t keep my current plan($78 unlimited everything with 2.5 gigs of tethering). Truth be told keeping our current plans is my only concern about this whole situation. If this does happen I hope the feds make retaining our plans a condition for approval to whoever might buy T-Mobile. MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! :-D

    • Dakota

      I f you’re not under a contract, T-Mobile isn’t required to let you keep that plan or price ad infinitum

      • fentonr

        Contracts don’t specify a plan, even if you are under contract Tmo can change your plan.

        • philyew

          Yes, they can change anything, but if it results in a material disadvantage, then the customer is allowed to terminate the contract without paying an ETF.

        • fentonr

          True.

        • maximus1901

          You gonna take the time to go to civil court and contest the change in terms? lol

        • philyew

          Why would you need to? Either they acknowledge the change is disadvantageous, which they normally do if you push hard enough with a legitimate complaint, or at worst you can go through a BBB complaint process. TM aren’t stupid, they fold if they know they would lose in arbitration or court.

  • KingCobra

    Due to T-Mobile becoming that disruptive carrier that the FCC has been thrilled to see shaking up the marketplace, I can’t see this deal getting approved. I would hate to see all that T-Mobile has done to the industry this year get reversed by being bought out by the worst major carrier of them all. I’d even argue that the T-Mobile brand is more favorable to consumers these days than the Sprint brand.

    • I also agree.

      • Matthew

        Same here my friend!!! Dish seems more reasonable for me to deal with verses it being in Sprints favor to have
        that chance in buying T-MobileUS!! Let’s say no to drug addicts like Sprint. Sprint is a total disgrace to society for that matters my friend!!

  • Jon

    I understand that a companies bottom line is to make money. But Shouldn’t Sprint and Dish focus on improving the business that they are running instead of trying to snatch up another business? I’m no expert but a businessman like Son complaining about debt and should he be able to purchase or get a stake in Tmobile wouldn’t it cost a heck of a lot more money to make the two networks compatible? What does he see that I don’t ? I can understand The interest that Dish has but Sprint doesn’t even make sense to me.

  • Nearmsp

    FCC has taken all the credit for the new aggressive competition in the US wireless market. It had rejected the AT&T offer to buy T-mobile and at that time said they need 4 national providers to ensure a free market. I very much doubt Sprint will be allowed to gobble up its most fierce competitor. There is no technical argument to make. Sprint has poor service, poor financial management and poor quality. Softbank overpaid for a piece of junk. They want to make their investment full by buying T-mobile and wearing that brand name. FCC will shoot down this bid. If anything, Sprint is being very foolish. All they will do is bring a Trojan horse for a white knight to come and outbid Sprint and put Sprint in a worse position than it is now. The young flamboyant owner of softbank is well on his way to squandering his dad’s fortune. I hope Japanese bankers put an end to this madness. Finally, under the agreement that allowed T-mobile Germany to float T-mobile USA, it was agreed that they would not sell prior to 2 years after float. So all this is just players warming up for the bidding. The smart ones never show their hand, but softbank, well.. they are not smart at all, sinking good money after bad money (sprint).

    • fsured

      There was a clause to that 2yr restraint from selling the company. I don’t remember the details but it has been covered on TMOnews. They can do it.

      • fentonr

        DT can sell their entire stake just not part of it before the two years are up.

        • maximus1901

          It’s 18 months after the close of the deal. The deal closed May 1, 2013.

      • Nearmsp

        I checked again, it is 18 months and it was a condition of the merger and floating it – under SEC regulation.

        • fsured

          Google: deutsche telecom clause to sell tmobile shares

          Look at the Bloomberg report. Right under the link for Bloomberg is the link for TMOnews reporting the clause.

  • Chris

    He’s probably buying T-mobile and then selling sprint lol. He’s probably shaking his head about the last purchase lol

  • NOTE Taker

    Please, Please, Please…. stay away, Sprint! Please!

  • Moby

    I think T-Mobile customers will be very happy to be migrated over to Sprint’s larger network. Especially with the Network Vision upgrades, T-Mobile customers will have increased coverage for a relatively small increase in their monthly fee. It’s a win-win for everyone for sure.

    • Napster87

      are you being serious? Sprint is by far the worst network. their data speeds are horrible. they’re ability to adapt to newer technologies is horrible. they put so many eggs in wimax’s basket. It screwed over their customers by them getting 4g phones that didn’t have 4g access and still had to pay a $10 “premium data” plan.

      • Moby

        Of course I’m serious. They are implementing LTE coverage all across their network including rural areas. In addition, they now offer unlimited talk, text & data for life—that’s something that T-Mobile doesn’t do. So when you add it up, it’s a much better deal for T-Mobile customers all around.

        • Napster87

          I’ve been waiting for sprint LTE for almost two years now. I have zero faith that your point is valid.

        • Bud

          lay off the sprint kool aid.

        • philyew

          I’ll take TM’s unlimited talk, text and high-speed data, with international roaming for $40 less than Sprint. Yes, they offer 5GB tethering compared with 2.5GB from TM, but is that really worth the extra $40?

        • maximus1901

          That’s a marketing gimmick. There is no legally binding mechanism to enforce that. Sprint could get rid of it and nothin would happen.
          They onl did it cause they’re hemmorghing customers.

        • Moby

          Of course it’s legally binding. They can’t touch the unlimited plans. You can be an old, elderly man in the rest home and still have unlimited data.

        • philyew

          Their terms and conditions certainly include a clause allowing them to change anything about the contract, with the customers right to cancel without ETF if it results in a material disadvantage.

          I suggest you read them, you’ll find that guarantees about unlimited service and lifetime availability are pretty hollow.

        • Moby

          “The guarantee will apply to customers as long as they remain on the plan, meet the terms and conditions of the plan and pay their bill in full and on-time. ”

          Soon T-Mobile customers will be able to take advantage of this guarantee.

        • Stone Cold

          Only guarantee we have in life is death.

        • philyew

          But read their General Terms and Conditions of Service which says: “Our Right To Change The Agreement & Your Related Rights
          We may change any part of the Agreement at any time, including, but not limited to, rates, charges, how we calculate charges, discounts, coverage, technologies used to provide services, or your terms of Service. If you lose your eligibility for a particular rate plan or if a particular rate plan is no longer supported or available, we may change your rate plan to one for which you qualify. We will provide you notice of material changes—and we may provide you notice of non-material changes—in a manner consistent with this Agreement (see “Providing Notice To Each Other Under The Agreement” section). If a change we make to the Agreement is material and has a material adverse effect on Services under your Term Commitment, you may terminate each line of Service materially adversely affected without incurring an Early Termination Fee only if: (a) call us within 30 days after the effective date of the change; (b) you specifically advise us that you wish to cancel Services because of a material change to the Agreement that we have made; and (c) we fail to negate the change after you notify us of your objection to it. If you do not notify us and cancel Service within 30 days of the change, an Early Termination Fee will apply if you terminate Services before the end of any applicable Term Commitment.”

          This trumps anything they say elsewhere.

        • Moby

          Actually the terms specific to the unlimited guarantee trump the more general terms and conditions: “Unlimited Guarantee: Available while line of service is
          activated on Unlimited, My Way Plan or My All-in Plan. Applies to
          unlimited features only .
          Account must remain in good standing and non-payment may void guarantee.”

          As long as you keep your account in good standing you’re good to go. You’ll find out this is true once Sprint ports your T-Mobile account over.

        • philyew

          Your terms of agreement with Sprint begins: “Your Service Agreement with Sprint includes, but is not limited to, the terms of your service plan (including those outlined below and set forth in the services guide and materials) and the most recent Sprint Nextel Terms and Conditions of Service (“Ts and Cs”). Carefully read all the parts of your Service Agreement with Sprint, including the MANDATORY ARBITRATION Provision and CLASS ACTION WAIVER PROVISION set forth in the Ts and Cs.”

          It ends: “The Agreement and the documents it incorporates make up the entire agreement between us and replaces all prior written or spoken agreements—you can’t rely on any contradictory documents or statements by sales or service representatives.”

          In between is sandwiched: “We may change any part of the Agreement at any time… if a change we make to the Agreement is material and has a material adverse effect on Services under your Term Commitment, you may terminate each line of Service materially adversely affected without incurring an Early Termination Fee.”

          So tell me, seriously, how anything that is said in service plans or separate marketing can trump these specific clauses? The overarching right is that Sprint can change any part of the agreement at any time, and this document is the primary instrument of contract between the parties.

          You can keep blowing smoke, but Sprint can repudiate that commitment at any time, if they wish to risk the loss of customers without payment of ETFs.

        • maximus1901

          What happens if they do kill the plans? You can’t reasonably sue Sprint cause of the no-class action, mandatory-arbitration clause in the contract.
          What happened when ATT decided to re-interpret “unlimited” to mean “after 3 gb, your speeds become crap”? How many people actually took the time to go to small-claims court? A few dozen out of tens of millions.
          What happened when Verizon required you to choose unlimited data or smartphone subsidy? Verizon is still gaining customers.
          So how are the DUO still doing OK after such a blatent violation of the spirit of the contracts? Cause their networks don’t suck.
          Sprint instituted the “unlimited guarantee” because that’s all it had to fight with.

          As soon as its NV is finished and it covers 200mil+ with 2.5GHz and taking customers from the DUO instead of losing them . . . it’ll have no reason to not pull an ATT or a VZW.

    • Eric

      The day a deal with Sprint is signed is the day that I go to Verizon. I will *NEVER* again be a Sprint “customer” after how they treated me before.

      The two networks are completely incompatible with each other. There is no synergy whatsoever. Really the only merger that technically would make sense would be for AT&T to buy T-Mobile, but the government didn’t think that was such a hot idea.

      • maximus1901

        You’re incorrect. Sprint can run HSPA on its basestations. So all co-located sites can be eliminated.

        • Bruce Banner

          Still at it huh? Give it a rest. The only people a merger benefits are sprint customers. Even the upgraded areas of sprints network are garbage compared to T-Mobile. I know this from comparing the actual networks in my area not based on some map or here say.

        • Moby

          Once Son gets the networks combined together, you’ll see the big difference.

        • maximus1901

          I replied with a technical answer to the issue of network compatibility. What’s the problem?

      • yankeesusa

        The only parts that aren’t compatible is the hspa and the 3g from sprint. The new sprint vision has installed new cell sites that can be reprogrammed very easily and therefore can be switched over to hspa if needed or just use LTE which should all be compatible depending on spectrum and frequency. I’m not a tech but I have looked a little into this.

    • fentonr

      They might be upgrading their network but it isn’t the network in worried about, its the company itself I don’t like.

    • Bruce Banner

      My brother has Sprint LTE and only averages about 5 Mbps down
      while I get about 11 down on hspa+ and about 28 down on T-Mobile LTE. Help me understand what about Sprint’s network would make me happy.

      • Moby

        Once they get all of T-Mobile’s spectrum and combine it with all of the Sprint already owns, they’ll have so much bandwith that it will make that 28 down seem like a slow turtle.

      • AngusMightHaveABeef

        I get about 8 down and 2-7 up on 4G LTE (T-Mobile), everywhere in my city. Weird how slow it is here compared to other places.

    • KingCobra

      Well the problem is that currently the Sprint network is garbage and Network Vision won’t be done until who knows when. Even the areas where Network Vision is complete are still garbage. Then there’s the issue of Sprint being CDMA

    • shadlom

      Slow data no thank you, I like my 40 mbps down on LTE.

      • maximus1901

        The only reason why TMO is sooooo fast is because of the lack of customers relative to their network. Tmobile admits as much on its website when it says it has “more spectrum per customer than ATT”.

        • Bruce Banner

          You’re pathetic no explanation needed. Sprint trolls combine and form SprintSucksZord. I find it hilarious that you comment as if it’s a done deal.

      • RIGHT ON!

    • yankeesusa

      maybe to add more of the lte coverage. But overall it is a downgrade for tmobile in the sense of speed and technology. Sprint is still far away from even touching the issues that plague their 3g network and their lte network is horrible when it comes to penetrating inside a building. Their new Spark upgraded network won’t work on most phones unless you buy a new one. So overall that is junk. Reason I left them and went with tmobile.

  • sushimane88

    Softbank and sprint should think before they act. Once softbank became majority shareholder of Sprint it gain sprint debt they owe and they owe alot. for them to think to try buy T-Mobile and say they can’t afford the break up fee if the deal go sour what’s the point on try it all. They need to realize at this day an age FCC and doj want 4 carrier for competition all four carrier can grow or lose customers and that’s what they want. Learn att tried to buy T-Mobile and lost. att gave T-Mobile 3 billion dollars and 4 billion dollars worth of spectrum for the break up fee that’s a lot of money if sprint and softbank can’t afford that don’t try it commonsense. If they wanna risk it go ahead but there are a high possibility for them to lose then winning. Currently tmobile has 45 million and sprint has 55 million customer base with Verizon specturm swap it could go low as 5 million customer difference. T-Mobile has a good future for the uncarrier phase where all the carrier has to copy.

    • Matthew

      Hey they are going to most likely keep the T-MobileUS name, and buyout TmobileUS current current company Tmobile Inc which is being based out in Germany for that matter. All Softbank would have to do is buyout Tmobiles main company that’s based out in Germany somewhere, retaining the TmobileUS branding that’s based out here in the U.S.A. country is what’s going to end up happening for that matters there’s friend!!

      • sushimane88

        well from what i know tmobile are already got brought out with the so called reverse merger with metropcs but still retain the tmobile name and john legree as ceo. not in one swap but over a course of a couple year where metropcs has 26% and the parent company has 74% and metropcs start to buy the share back from the parent company and eventually tmobile us would be a separate company and most likely change their name to sumthing else because keeping tmobile name would cost them in my opinion not sure. but if sprint still want to buy tmobile it would still be the three carrier thing not the four carrier and that’s a big no no. but all about competition in the us but i still hope no one touches tmobile their the master mind of everything that all the carrier are trying to copy but cant follow. but can say every carrier has they pros and con. take it with a grain of salt.

      • get at me homie

        Softbank should just mainly fix sprint problem with their network before acting into buying another carrier if they can’t afford the break up free. By then maybe they would have the money to but who know T-Mobile might jump the number 3 with their situation of the un carrier.

        • yankeesusa

          agreed, Especially since the softbank head honcho announced a while back that the deal with sprint wasn’t going to show positive results till a year or 2 from now. How much longer will it be if they get entangled with another buyout? I don’t understand. Maybe they have a trick up their sleeve.

      • Danny Lewis

        I can see it now…Sprint buys T-Mobile and makes it an MNVO of Sprint! Gross! !

  • Yardie D

    Has this site become a PR arm for T-Mobile since David left? There’s a huge fiasco going on with T-Mobile’s supply of Ipad Minis & Air for their Christmas promotion & not a word about it here. This so unlike Tmo News, certainly not like when David was running things. Other sites are getting the more juicy stuff and all I can see here is the regular buyout rumours & release of phones most don’t really care about. No wonder I’m hardly here compared to a must visit at least twice a day when David was running things. Good thing the comments are still worth reading than the articles themselves.

    • philyew

      Which other sites are covering the supply issue? I’ve tried various Google searches relating to TM, iPad, problem etc and nothing is coming up…

      • Yardie D

        Believe it or not the official Tmo customer forum. Just a bunch of us discussing our experiences & the occasional Tmo rep chiming in their 2 cents. I’ve been hanging out there recently to try get the scoop on tmo customer related stuff which we used to get here.

        • philyew

          That’s funny, I’m hanging out here because I can’t stand the latest format of the TM forum. ;-)

          I have to say that, if I was running this site, I wouldn’t be trying to look for material from there to write about here, way too much of a maze of issues – real and imagined.

          If you want Cam to pick up on those kinds of issues, maybe you could use the Submit News link at the top of this page to give him a hint about what might be going on. I just did that regarding people complaining that they aren’t getting the Simple Choice migration terms promised in a letter sent them by TM, of which customer support are now denying the existence.

          To be fair, stuff coming up over the weekend didn’t used to get addressed by David either. I’m pretty sure that he had a number of insiders who would supply him with tips, and that is probably not happening so much now.

        • Yardie D

          Agreed, I’m new to that forum and it’s not very appealing but it’s the only place I could find online discussing the Ipad issue. But if you read the discussion there you’ll see it’s been happening since November that’s why I’m surprised Tmo News haven’t picked up on it since then. Ive been going through the fiasco since last weekend. I’ll use the link you mention next time but will leave it to you to submit since you mentioned it.

        • yankeesusa

          I really don’t see how knowing that shipments of ipads or phones have been delayed is any worthy news that “must” be talked about. I guess then your better off in the forums. I like forums myself too

      • Yardie D

        Btw. … I’m dalyew on that forum….go figure. …wonder if we’re related? :-)

        • philyew

          Unlikely, but stranger things have happened ;-)

      • RIGHT!

    • maximus1901

      The new guy Cam is cuently living in BRITAIN. Not likely he can fully understand the situation here.

    • Tony Edwards

      Guy, what is wrong with you? David did not keep up with everything. Sometimes, there would not be update for days on this site. Now David is over at 9to5google and posting articles every 5 minutes. It pays not to get to involved with anything that is not within your reach because David is looking out for David as he should so stop bashing Cam.

      • Yardie D

        Not bashing, just constructive criticism. I loved this site and just letting whoever is in charge know of my personal observations. Never personally knew David neither Cam but I figure both would like to get feedback from its readers.

    • yankeesusa

      Really, having a short supply of the most wanted mobile gadget is something to talk about? Ok. Thanks for letting us know. This is called tmonews and therefore the news that have been posted here have been relevant and very important. How is buyout news and new phones not relevant?

      • Yardie D

        Didn’t say they were irrelevant just can be too much when you consider stock shortage for a device that tmobile is still pushing people to purchase & deliberately giving out misinformation. Just pointing out that things like this used to be reported here within at least a few days of it’s occurrence. But if you want to be a smart a$$ knock yourself out.

        • yankeesusa

          I did come off a little rude didn’t I. Sorry about that.

        • Yardie D

          No prob. …we all are guilty of it some time or another. …very big of you though, really appreciate it. Shows the quality of people that use this site.

  • mmunson

    If this happens I will likely go to Verizon. It will likely jack up my bill 27/mo, but at least quality will happen.

    • fentonr

      Agreed. I’ll jump ship for AT&T or Verizon. I don’t like either option and it would coat me significantly more than I pay now but I don’t want anything to do with Sprint or Dish. Especially Sprint.

  • tmo_user

    Sprint is a complete mess and now their thinking of acquiring another carrier along with having an entirely different network technology, this is more of a step backward than forward. Dish I can understand and can be beneficial with the additional spectrum available, but not Sprint.

  • NYCTheBronx

    I hate you Sprint! I hope this doesn’t come true or else I’m going to have to go back to money hungry Verizon. I’ve been with T-Mobile for 7 years. I wanna be a T-Mobile customer foreverrrr! :/

  • Bowen9284

    In debt, but looking to increase their debt…hmmm where have I heard this before?

  • AndroidProfit

    I hope that AT&T buys T-Mobile.

    • NOYB

      They already tried that. Remember???

  • She-Ra

    The Chinese or Russians should buy T-Mobile if it was for sale to level the playing field. Otherwise T-Mobile should stay independent.

    • She-Ra

      If the Norwegian Oil Fund bought T-Mobile, they would perhaps be able to dominate the entire world. They could change the name to Thor, their logo would be the hammer.

      • She-Ra

        If the skies turned from blue to pink, the sky would be magenta in color.

      • tonyfatex

        ThorMobile. LOL

  • Tony Edwards

    This is why I did not get excited about this uncarrier crap. Deutsche Telekom always wanted to sell T-mobile. If Deutsche Telekom was willing to sell us down the river to ATT, then you can believe that Sprint, Dish or any company will do. There is no loyalty. From now on, every stunt that John Legere does will be suspect to me because it will be like trying to sell a old truck by cleaning the outside and making it pretty so no one will notice how nasty the engine is. T-mobile’s headline making decisions over the last year was for one purpose…..make T-mobile pretty to sell.

    • Todd

      Not sure why that is a surprise to you. DT has been pretty forthcoming about their desire to exit the US market. And, yes, Legere is supposed to make TMO look good to a buyer – to buy TMO stock. That’s his job. He’s supposed to get people interested in buying TMO shares of stock, whether it’s one share or 75% of the company. But that interest will drive up the price of each share, which I’m sure his bonus is largely based on (as are most other CEO’s).

    • philyew

      DT spent $55 billion acquiring a company which is now worth maybe $30 billion, despite the fact that they grew it from less than 10 million customers to over 45 million. When AT&T offered $39 billion, at a time that no one else (including Sprint) would have gone above $25 billion, you can bet that DT grabbed it.

      What’s more important to TM customers is that they also got a $7 billion break-up package, which has enabled the company to escape a technological dead-end and develop an industry-changing momentum.

      No contracts, getting rid of the subsidy con-trick, LTE for areas covering 65% of the population, Jump!, international roaming are way more than window dressing. They are fundamental changes at the heart of the industry model here in the US, and they are causing changes in the way the other carriers deliver service.

      Yes, DT may still sell TMUS, but they are selling a company that has been made far more attractive to the consumer and the investor than was the case two years ago when AT&T came calling.

      • x646x

        Too bad that they have done squat for their CS, powerless and often indifferent reps, and the overall archaic ordering process. When a customers has some sort of issue or wrench in the works at tmobile, they will see what I mean. Heck, they couldn’t be bothered to take the 1 minute to update a UPS package delivery address, that was shipping to an incorrect address. In fact, told me to chase UPS down and get their error sorted out.

        Even the dumbest company on the planet has the smarts to treat customers well during the signup (courting) stage – not tmobile. Again, the signs are there that this is a strategy to rapidly drive demand and sell this house of cards.

      • maximus1901

        It’s actually worse than that for DT: that’s $55bil in early 2000s money, not 2013 money.

    • yankeesusa

      Really, all the uncarrier is just for show? maybe that is why in my area tmobile is now top dog and when I tested tmobile couple years ago they were horrible and now they have LTE almost everywhere I travel here in my town when my sprint phone barely stays on lte. It may all be hype but its hype that shows results and it is why I moved 2 of my lines to tmobile and am loving it. Also, why would anyone want to buy a company that is all hype? Companies are interested in it because they seem to be doing a great job and it shows.

      • x646x

        They might be top-dog compared to sprint but AT&T and Verizon are light-years ahead of them. Heck, Verizon’s LTE coverage this very day is larger than Tmobile’s entire network. To add insult to injury, a large portion of tmobile’s network is 2G Edge anyway.

        • tomarone

          I can laugh at that, can’t I?

    • D Nice

      In the Business world loyalty means nothing. If it doesn’t make dollars it doesn’t make sense.

      • JBrowne1012

        Funny thing is is that T-mobile could make more money but the necessary steps aren’t exactly being taken.

        • philyew

          Care to elaborate on the ways?

      • x646x

        Ever heard of Apple? The same company that can essentially purchase the entire DT franchise in cash.

        The proof is also in the pudding. Tmobile CS fell to last place over the last few years and they started to loose customers in the hundreds of thousands.

    • x646x

      100% agree. Uncarrier and this lipstick on a pig is smoke an mirrors, designed to prop up a failing asset, to get it ready for sale.

      • maximus1901

        Question: how did you come to this conclusion?

      • philyew

        Encouraging the majority of their customers onto contract free arrangements hardly seems like the behavior of an organization fearful of failure and customer loss.

        You had a bad experience with customer service and, yes, TM are currently ranked 4th. But here’s the thing – the difference between first and last in the JD Power ratings is about 7 percentage points. Verizon scores 96%, TM 89%. Room for improvement, for sure, but not the walking nightmare you suggest.

    • maximus1901

      Yes, it’s called capitalism. You’re not family, you’re a customer.

  • TechHog

    Well, that’s it guys. The end. It was fun while it lasted. Rest in peace T-Mobile.

  • vinnyjr

    Long time T-Mobile customer who has the fastest LTE and HSPA+ speeds out of any Carrier in my area. Say what you want to about T-Mobile but since John Legere has taken over the speeds in my area have doubled and they were fast before they were doubled. Their plans are 2nd to none, real unlimited data, wifi calling I can keep going. Hoping T-Mobile stays just the way they are, they don’t need any other company to partner up with. Sprint would ruin this company. Hoping for the best and that is T-Mobile as they are now adding customers every day.

    • VapidRapidRabbit

      I’m still sitting on EDGE here. T-Mobile can’t stay the way they are (only focusing on metropolises and neglecting smaller cities). AT&T has LTE here. Verizon has LTE. Sprint has EV-DO. I see that with T-Mobile you get what you pay for. I’ll give them until March until I switch back to AT&T. I’ll rather pay a little more for usable data than continuously fork over cash for no reason at all.

      • x646x

        Literally 500 feet outside numerous large metro area and it’s straight on 2G EDGE.

        • VapidRapidRabbit

          I know. That’s how it is in Memphis and Nashville.

        • maximus1901

          TMO won’t upgrade faster than Sprint is. Once Sprint catches up, TMO will be forced to upgrade beyond the city limits.

      • maximus1901

        I recommend many of the many ATT MVNOs. I’ve tried out H20 wireless: $60/month for unlimited, no-throttling, HSPA+.

  • tomarone

    Yes it Sucks. But, this is American style business poineered by Carl Icahn. It’s all a matter of making a mint off of selling companies (OUT). The stock is everything, the product, nothing. I hope the FED uses it’s proper role, and BLOCKS this merger. Start Writing Letters to the (what, FCC? FTC?) Get on your pulpit and WRITE to the FED.

    • tomarone

      P.S. This is exactly the same situation as AT&T last year. The stakes are higher but TMO customers know what’s happening here.

  • T.Wheelz

    the one thing that is forgotten with all this investor bs is that these companies are nothing without us. they thrive on our dollar and we are the few that should be forcing these companies to at least abide by reasonable transactions. but no we live off of their word and dealings and we don’t matter to them we are the statistic.

    • tomarone

      No that’s what boycotts and other mass consumer actions are for. Protests, etc. Many people have given their lives to change corporate practices.

  • Chris

    God I hope not!

  • Rick Rudge

    This is obviously going to be an interesting year for T-Mobile. With Softbank and Dish Network making bids on them, and Deutsche Telekom smacking their lips. I’m definitely reading Cam’s postings with great interest.

  • Mike

    if this happens it will be bad for consumers. Example: I would leave instantly for Verizon and it would cost more. In my opinion Sprint is terrible. DT, if you wanna sell, atleast do American consumers a favor and sell to DISH so we still have four carriers. Sprint will give T-Mobile the kiss of death it did to Nextel. To sum it up, if it happened, many would move to AT&T or Verizon and pay more.