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Sprint and T-Mobile abandon merger talks

05 November 2017

The chief execs of Sprint and T-Mobile both said they still see the benefits of combining but indicated the talks broke down over financial terms.

Even if they had arrived at a deal, T-Mobile and Sprint would have faced heavy regulatory scrutiny to complete a merger.

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Sprint President and CEO Marcelo Claure said that "while we couldn't reach an agreement to combine our companies, we certainly recognize the benefits of scale through a potential combination".

Sprint parent company Softbank is reportedly chatting up Charter Communications about a possible merger, amid indications that Sprint's merger deal with T-Mobile US has tanked.

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Reports from Japan earlier in the week claimed SoftBank, which owns Sprint, is set to pull the plug on a rumoured merger with Deutsche Telekom's T-Mobile over a dispute about who would control the combined company. A merged T-Mobile-Sprint would have been a major challenger to number two AT&T, and could have given Verizon a run for the top spot in a few years. Its wide portfolio and clout have made it a good fit to own and operate Sprint from above thus far, though that was not always the case; at one point, Masayoshi Son was very open about the fact that the company was losing money thanks to Sprint. Sources had originally stated that Sprint chose to call off the acquisition because Deutsche Telekom was looking to get the majority of control over the entity resulting from the merger; though some Sprint executives were reportedly okay with this, others allegedly wanted more.

The companies expected to have a better shot at the merger this year under the Trump administration.

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Talks between Sprint and T-Mobile for a possible merger have come to a halt, both companies announced on Saturday, ending weeks of discussions that had the potential to reconfigure the mobile industry. But T-Mobile lobbed in a last minute counter offer and there was hope again that a deal could be salvaged.

Sprint and T-Mobile abandon merger talks