The FCC has hit the pause button on its review of the T-Mobile-Sprint merger once again.
Today the Federal Communications Commission said that it is pausing the informal 180-day shot clock on its review of the merger of T-Mobile and Sprint, marking the third time that the FCC’s shot clock has been paused. The first pause was the result of a substantially revised network engineering model that had been submitted, and the second pause was due to the government shutdown.
The FCC explains that on February 21st and March 6th, T-Mo and Sprint submitted “significant additional information regarding their network integration plans for 2019-2021, an extension of their previously filed merger simulation analysis to cover the years 2019-2021, and additional information regarding their claims related to fixed wireless broadband services.”
Whenever deal applicants make substantial new submissions, the FCC likes to pause its shot clock to allow for staff and third-party review of the new info as well as to seek additional comments from the public. This ensures that the FCC can strike a balance between a speedy review, a thorough analysis, and the need for third-parties to comment on submitted materials.
The FCC’s shot clock is now paused on day 121 of 180. The agency will take new comments on T-Mobile and Sprint’s latest submissions through March 28, 2019. Barring any more major submissions or other issues, the 180-day shot clock will resume on April 4, 2019 on day 122.