T-Mobile, Sprint merger won’t happen before September [Rumor]

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The ongoing negotiations behind closed doors between SoftBank, Sprint, T-Mobile and Deutsche Telekom are set to go on a little longer according to the most recent report by Reuters. The site’s sources claim that the companies are working diligently on a detailed case to put before U.S. regulators who – up until now – have seemed opposed to any merger deal.

As we’ve already heard, SoftBank and Deutsche Telekom have agreed terms of the deal, in which DT would receive around $40 per share. The two companies have even, allegedly, agreed on a break-up fee  just in case the deal doesn’t go through. SoftBank has worked extensively on deals with financial institutions to secure the necessary funding, and made sure it’s available for at least 18 months after a merger deal is announced publicly.

According to Reuters, “the companies are keen to bulletproof their arguments for a merger that is sure to face heavy regulatory scrutiny, two of the people familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.” And that’s not surprising. Given that all the financials are resolved, the only thing standing in this merger’s way is the regulatory bodies’ potential opposition. You can’t blame the network operators for taking extra time to ensure their argument for turning 4 carriers in to 3 is water-tight. 

It was reported in the recent past that the intended merger would be announced at some point this summer. That, for now, seems unlikely given the details in the report.

Source: Reuters

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  • Ryanide

    Wish is was unlikely to hear official merger news, oh say… indefinitely!!!
    I would rather have 4 carriers than having to choose between 3.
    This merger would be horrible for almost everyone in the States.

    • Curious

      Why would 3 relevant carriers be worse then 2 big carriers and 2 bottom feeders?

      • http://mastermind777sblog.blogspot.com mastermind777

        In a word: collusion.

        • Curious

          So it is more likely that 3 will perform collusion then just the big 2 now?

        • http://mastermind777sblog.blogspot.com mastermind777

          Yes. If Verizon and AT&T both do something that’s terrible for consumers (high prices, data caps, etc), then you can just switch to T-Mobile or Sprint, who aren’t likely to take up the same unpopular policies. If you have three more evenly-sized carriers, then it’s easier for the 3rd entity to go with VZW/ATT and then it’s tough luck, everyone’s doing it. Just look at Canada, where the 3 national carriers all have largely the exact same pricing for terrible data caps. Only regional providers offer a much better deal, but they’re not nationwide.

      • Bryan Pizzuti

        How exactly would Sprint and T-Mobile combined be more relevant? This is actually a technical question.

      • Justin747

        Would you rather 2 big carriers and 1 bigger bottom feeder, potentially strengthening the big 2 by mistake?

    • Ordeith

      I already think there are only 3. Sprint is so bad they never factor in to my considerations.

  • Whiskers

    I hope it never happens …
    F-Sprint !

    • Richard Yarrell

      I agree for sure. This won’t be happening.

      • Oliver Jackson

        They keep on tugging at TMobile.They don’t need Sprint sorry ass and are better off.I really dont see this going through.

  • http://twitter.com/SParKlngCyaNide SparklingCyanide

    I would find it still very unlikely for this deal to ever pass, no matter how much DT or Softbank may want it.

  • Bryan Pizzuti

    You know, I’m starting to think about how these two carriers could possibly be more relevant together, and the only way I can think of is if Sprint gets access to AWS and more PCS licenses, and T-Mobile gets to use ESMR for rural coverage rather than the 700 MHz A-block. Oh, and make sure John Legere is running things, not anyone from Sprint/Softbank.

  • VG

    I hope the feds look at Sprint’s existing policies regarding portability of unlocked phones and tablets when they make their decision on whether or not to allow the merger. For example, it’s my understanding that Sprint currently doesn’t allow non-Sprint branded phones and tablets to work on their network (even though some Verizon phones and tablets, once unlocked, can certainly work on Sprint). Even the new AT&T/Verizon/T-Mo iPads, which are identical to the new Sprint iPads, won’t be allowed to connect to the Sprint network. Similarly, unlocked Sprint phones like the iPhone 5S will not work on domestic GSM carriers such as AT&T and T-Mobile, but the phone will work abroad. These policies make it clear Sprint is NOT consumer-friendly, and they have made no attempt at changing these policies. I hope the DOJ and the FCC are paying attention to this!

    • Justin747

      This is almost a non issue as most phones and tablets are on all networks anyway. There are very few exclusive phones these days and the Sprint exclusives are pretty irrelevant. Sprint also uses a weird system and a goofy activation system.

      You could avoid all those issues by doing a little research and buying the phone from the right channel or buying directly from the manufacturer.

      If the FCC needs a reason to block this merger, they don’t have to look any further than Sprint’s last merger. Even though it’s a somewhat different leadership group with Sprint, it’s the same logic as the Nextel merger. That whole “WE CAN’T COMPETE” bull**** excuse.

  • sidekicker89

    You are crazy if you actually want this acquisition to happen. Prices will go up, that’s a guarantee. People seem to think you don’t have to pay a bank back plus interest when you are loaned money lol. How do you expect them to keep prices low with all that debt!?

    • UMA_Fan

      Because they will have double the amount of customers that’s how. At the same time their operating costs go down EVEN though they operate different wireless tech.

      What’s funny is even if Tmo/Sprint increase THEIR prices if they were to combine I can see long term down the road Verizon competing based on price for the first time. Verizon isn’t going to react with plan pricing against T-Mobile OR Sprint stand alone while they sit with less than half as many customers. It’s when a combined T-Mobile/Sprint starts nipping at their heels is when Verizon starts to panic and you see some real competition.

      • Justin747

        Because they will have double the amount of customers EVENTUALLY.

        Why do people seem to think carrier mergers are magic? They take YEARS and MILLIONS of dollars to complete. It’s almost guaranteed that prices will increase at some point to offset spending. DO NOT try to justify any kind of price increase unless you are an executive for either company. It just makes you look like a blind fanboy. Price increase and fewer competitors is bad from EVERY consumer viewpoint.

        So basically your entire last paragraph is Verizon hate. This goes back to my theory in another comment….

        “I have a theory that nobody technically supports this merger for the actual merger. I see all supporters as either:

        1. Sprint loyalist who are desperate to Sprint finally succeed at some point.

        2. People who just want to see Verizon and/or AT&T have some competition.”

        Nobody cares about the actual results of this merger. The logic is ” SOMEBODY BEAT VERIZON/AT&T” and people don’t realize that this merger isn’t the answer.

        • Drew

          Well said. This merger should not happen at all period. :)

        • UMA_Fan

          I just don’t see tmobile passing at&t in subscribers without combining with Sprint.

        • Justin747

          They don’t need to pass or even catch AT&T to be successful and profitable

          Why are people treating carrier competition like some sort of race?

        • UMA_Fan

          The more customers they have the better deals they will get from device manufacturers. So that means more device options and at lower costs to customers because tmobile would have the buying power to negotiate on behalf of 90 million customers instead of 49 million.

          Also there is no way at&t or Verizon will competitively awknowledge tmobiles free international data roaming until tmobile gets to the 90 million customers mark or tmobile gets close to surpassing them in marketshare. I think you are being blind towards the positives the merger could produce.

        • Justin747

          You are acting like this is 2005.

          There is very little variety with phones. Companies are relying primarily on flagships instead of a diverse array of phones like in the pre-iPhone days. No carrier is really getting exclusive phones anymore. To compete with the iPhone, phone manufacturers need their product with every carrier. Name a few phones that you can get elsewhere that TMO doesn’t currently have.

          Also, TMO customers have the ability to skip the carrier and buy their phone directly from the manufacturer. TMO doesn’t need deals with manufacturers. The whole point of EIP is to separate the Carrier from the Phone Manufacturer.

          Again, you keep proving my point. You don’t care about this merger for the merger, you care about the fallout. You just want ANYBODY to put pressure on Verizon/AT&T, and you don’t realize that this merger doesn’t do this. You act like Sprint/T-Mobile merge, and the very next day they have 90 million customers and go to war with the Big 2. THAT IS NOT HOW THIS WORKS SIR OR MADAM!!!!!

          Please tell me ONE benefit to this merger going through for the customers of the combined Sprint/T-Mobile/SoftBank company. Just ONE benefit without mentioning Verizon or AT&T.

        • UMA_Fan

          Well not too long ago most analysts were EXTREMELY skeptical of T-Mobile buying MetroPCS. They saw it as a desperate ploy to boost up subscriber numbers and, like you seem to be doing now, completely ignoring any positives of the combination like all the compatible spectrum for example. Or the fact net adds for T-Mobile and MetroPCS combined when they were separate were the largest in growth for the entire industry. And look where we are now that merger has resulted in the T-Mobile of today! Without that all of this wouldn’t have occurred.

        • Justin747

          Double post mistake

        • Justin747

          You are doing the same goofy thing some other person did. You are comparing adding 9 million customers vs adding 54 million customers. Metro also was a regional carrier. They didn’t have the same overlap issues as Sprint/T-Mobile will.

          Since I’m ignoring any positives to this merger, go ahead and list some. Explain to me how this merger benefits me and everyone here as T-Mobile customers. I haven’t found a single benefit in my research.

          I don’t care about how this benefits some irrational fight vs The Big 2. Stop letting your hate for Verizon and/or AT&T cloud your logic here.

        • UMA_Fan

          Then please explain why Verizon has essentially non responded in any major way to most of Tmobiles industry moves?

          The reality is Verizon is ok if tmobile gains another 10 million customers. That’s how big of a gap there is between the big two and sprint/tmobile and to just ignore and dismiss this VERY important fact is ridiculous.

          A Verizon and AT&T competing for best service plan pricing is good for tmobile customers period. That’s just simply not happening I’m the industry now and won’t happen anytime soon otherwise without a merger.

        • Justin747

          Aaaaaaand there is my point yet again…

          Nobody is for this merger for the merger, people just want Verizon and AT&T die. You are letting your Verizon and/or AT&T hate cloud your judgement.

          You can’t provide a single reason why this merger is good for T-Mobile customers. It flat out sounds like you are trying to save money on your Verizon plan. You just keep spouting the same “subscribe number” nonsense

          WHO CARES that there is a big gap between customers. Yet again… This is NOT a race. There are ways to be profitable without being the largest carrier.

          And how on earth does T-Mobile/Sprint pooling customers create competition for Verizon and AT&T? You would have less carriers to choose from and a new #3 with a bunch of random spectrum bands to integrate. Do you not realize that T-Mobile and Sprint cover the same general area?

        • Justin747

          I was in the “industry” for 10 years. I have said it repeatedly that I worked thru the Sprint/Nextel debacle.

          If Sprint/T-Mobile merge, They WILL make excuses about expansion eventually to justify price increases. They can undercut Verizon/AT&T by $5 and still make a “budget carrier” claim. If there is only a $5 but a MAJOR network difference, people will flee which in turn will make the Big 2 stronger.

          So what will we do as customers do when Sprint/T-Mobile merge and increase prices? Absolutely nothing. We just gotta shut up and take it or go to verizon/AT&T. A carrier option will be eliminated.

      • philyew

        Aside from the question of how rapidly and effectively they could reduce operating costs in real terms, the main issue is whether the new company will be willing to settle for the more modest margins that are a part of TM’s current multi-year forecast, or if they intend to aim for the 50%+ margins enjoyed by Verizon and AT&T.

        How does a company guarantee that it will remain aggressively price and performance competitive? The shareholders and bond underwriters have quite different expectations from the consumers. A highly concentrated market makes it far too easy for the consumers’ interests to be ridden over roughshod.

        You can speculate that the new company would want to maintain aggressive pressure on Verizon and AT&T, but the converse could be equally true, and they could settle for parity, knowing that there are no real low-cost competitors for disappointed consumers to run to.

  • Hiro

    Isn’t it expected that Sprint would be merged into Tmo if this happens, with Legere being the expected CEO of the joint company? If so, I feel this would be a good thing for T-Mobile…

    • Justin747

      How do people see this merger as positive AT ALL? All TMO gains is subscribers, which is what they have been doing anyway. Sprint is rumored to announce almost 900k subscriber loss tomorrow.

      This merger is the equivalent of a person who is doing fairly well after turning their life around, getting into a relationship with a broke, drug addicted idiot who is lives with their Japanese uncle

      • Adrayven

        and most of the markets for both t-mobile and sprint overlap.. There is no real coverage gain.. a few areas.. thats it.. and all they BOTH have is to much high end spectrum..

        Yea.. Sprint has 5×5 800Mhz but thats hardly a spit in the eye.. almost everything Sprint has is 2500Mhz.. crap spectrum that costs more to run because it cannot get into buildings, and requires many more towers..

        THEN because of this merger talk they BOTH lose out on the 600Mhz spectrum because the dogs are let loose (ATT/Verizon) as this kills the restrictions the FCC put on the Auction to limit their spending..

        This is a bad, bad, and more bad.. Then you add on the @ssload the debt that Sprint / Softbank has.. Prices go up because the new ‘Sprint’ has no spunky 4th competitor to keep them from doing so and they raise prices close to ATT/Verizon.. start up contracts..

        Yeahh… anyone who says this is good is smoookinnn something..

        • Justin747

          I agree with you 1000%. I have a theory that nobody technically supports this merger for the actual merger. I see all supporters as either:

          1. Sprint loyalist who are desperate to Sprint finally succeed at some point. If it takes a competitor to revive the moribund that is Sprint so be it. They are just desperate for some kind of improvement at this point.

          2. People who just want to see Verizon and/or AT&T have some competition.

          But this merger accomplishes NEITHER of these. People are looking at this with Sports logic and expecting T-Mobile and Sprint/SoftBank to announce the merger, and the very next day compete with Verizon and AT&T. I worked thru the Sprint/Nextel debacle. It literally took YEARS to just get all the employees on the same page with plans, policies, and other basic information.

          Along with the network headaches you mentioned, the combined company would have:

          Layoffs, store closures, store remodels, company rebranding, retail system integration, employee retraining, plan changes, price increases, etc… ALL of these things costing the new company TONS of money and headaches.

          To the supporters, THIS IS NOT POWER RANGERS or CAPTAIN PLANET or VOLTRON!!!! These 2 companies will not magically join forces and defeat the big bad guys. That’s NOT how this works… That’s not how any of this works…

        • steve1026

          Haha I like the e-surance bit.

        • Nick Gonzalez

          +1000

      • Nick Gonzalez

        lol

  • Jamie Yoak

    Think about the past merger. Sprint and US Cellular. T Mobile and Metro PCS. Sprint and Nextell. At best we are worse off and at worse it was a disaster (Sprint and Nextell). Regulators will say no and T Mobile will get anothet break up fee.

    • Adrayven

      FCC is run by the prior head of the wireless and cable lobbying arm now.. It’s not the same FCC.. Not a month after he was in we had a bill for the end of net neutrality pushed threw. Think about it.

      • Trevnerdio

        I hope that doesn’t change too much :

      • philyew

        Fortunately, the primary responsibility for mergers and acquisitions sits with the Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice, not the FCC.

  • ” J.D. “

    Sprint is not fixing their broken network Their trying to buy a new one & slap their name on it then dismantle the garbage that remains while globing customers & taking credit for work that’s not theirs They made BIG promises before but never delivered on any ! They killed Nextel, & totally shattered U S Cellular !
    Flat out if Sprint mergers with T-Mobile its a losing battle & most people would bail over to Verizon or AT&T anyway to get away from sprint I never seen so much hatred for a cell phone company as I’ve seen with Sprint It will only put T-Mobile behind the eight ball . Not to mention they need 8 different banks to secure this deal. No matter how you look at it, it’s just bad sushi another kamikaze deal from Sprint A.K.A. Soft Bank

    • Drew

      This merger is getting Block guys. No need to stress now!! :)

      • Drew

        Blocked*

  • cl3hjr

    After being over seas for the past weeks, I found it hilarious that I actually used Softbank’s network with all the “rumors” about the merger.

  • Drew

    T-Mobile US should remain on it’s own terms. Shout outs to T-Mobile US

  • Drew

    Sprint can go die for all I care.

  • Drew

    I so would like for this whole merger to not happen at all. Oh my gosh, lets keep on writing to the fcc/ doj and of course the regulators to see about having this merger deal with Softbank/ T-Mobile US blocked once and for all. T-Mobile US will always remain the top dog of all other carriers that are within the whole US region of things. Sprint/ Softbank just seriously need to leave us alone. I love you T-Mobile US. Goodbye Sprint. Go die please!! :)

    • Spanky

      “T-Mobile US will always remain the top dog of all other carriers that are within the whole US region of things.”
      Maybe when their coverage matches AT&T’s and Verizon’s.

      • Drew

        I do not care what you think. To me they are top notch in the areas that was so mean’t to be served out in. If it is not working for you, then just simply leave, thats all. T-Mobile US to me is a thousand times way better than the other 3 dogs out that so happen to be in business still. Screw Verizon, AT&T & Sprint!! Ewww Goodbye Sprint including the other 3 that I’ve mentioned just now. Such losers. T-Mobile will never be a loser.

  • Chris

    We’ve been hearing about this for how many years now? 4? 5? It’s not going to happen. You can all stop posting about it now.

    • Drew

      Thanks at least someone knows the truth about this thing. Sprint can just stop trying now. Eww

  • m

    If they merge, will we see Blackberry back. The entire line not just one or two models.

  • Drew

    Oh my gosh please please please block this merger from happening at all. T-Mobile US can manage well all by themselves independently now. Why cant the FCC/ DOJ just simply make an announcement for this merger to not go through at all. Sprint/ Softbank are very horrible people to deal with in the first place. The minute that this merger with Softbank/ Sprint merging T-Mobile US gets blocked is the day that all of us will be happy once again!! More money, more network upgrades/ advanced services!! :)

  • Rocket Scientist

    Although I am loathe to give George Lucas any credit for adding this to the Star Wars franchise (and I refuse to play the newest version of Ep 6 because of this change), THIS is an opportune time and way to express feelings of this merger.

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Unless this is a VERY deep dark plan to get 2 billion from Sprint, this is a very bad idea. Even if it IS a secret plan to get their money just like with AT&T… This seems like playing Russian Roulette where your options are either kill the company or get paid for missing. BAD IDEA!

  • Richard Yarrell

    T-mobile Sprint merger won’t happen at all.