Sprint’s talks with T-Mobile about a potential merger are back on and being held at the same time as discussions with cable companies, those with knowledge of the talks tell Bloomberg. Sprint’s exclusive negotiating period with Comcast and Charter expired, enabling the carrier to resume other discussions.
Speaking to investors about the situation on Monday, Masayoshi Son declined comment on specific deals and was vague about a timeframe, according to BTIG analyst Walter Piecyk. The ultimate decision about whether the two carriers strike a deal, may rest on a decision between T-Mobile’s parent company Deutsche Telekom and SoftBank, which owns more than 83 percent of Sprint.
One source familiar with the talks told Bloomberg a Sprint sale to T-Mobile could be an all-stock transaction and probably wouldn’t be publicized soon. Each company would still need to conduct due diligence, pushing an announcement to later in the year.
Losing billions since Softbank took control of Sprint in 2013, the carrier is in the middle of a turnaround plan. CEO Marcelo Claure told investors last week his executives are building Sprint into a standalone company, yet it makes sense to talk with others about opportunistic deals, Inside Towers reported.
Sprint has publicly stated it makes sense to partner with a company such as T-Mobile to compete with larger carriers like AT&T and Verizon. Claure also said to expect some sort of announcement soon about a merger decision. Indeed, Son echoed that on Monday. Separately, Softbank has garnered as much as $65 billion in financing to strike a deal with Charter so the carrier could offer broader services, from home broadband internet to phone plans.