On Wednesday, the Nikkei news agency cited unnamed sources who said that SoftBank, the company that owns a majority of Sprint, was “in the final stages of talks with T-Mobile’s German parent, Deutsche Telekom.” News of a merger between Sprint and T-Mobile hit in early December, with the Wall Street Journal reporting that Sprint’s parent company was wary of trying to merge with T-Mobile like AT&T had years earlier, only to see its efforts thwarted by the Department of Justice and the Federal Communications Commission.
Nikkei’s sources went on to say that SoftBank is estimated to offer over $19 billion for a 60 to 70 percent stake in T-Mobile through its US subsidiary Sprint. AT&T, on the other hand, had offered Deutsche Telekom $39 billion for the carrier back in 2011. If Sprint and Verizon join, the two companies would have a combined 53 million postpaid subscribers, compared to Verizon’s 95 million and AT&T’s 72 million.
A merger between the two carriers would have to be approved by the DoJ and the FCC before it could go through. While the two authorities have been reluctant to allow telecom giants to merge, combining the third and fourth largest carriers would put the resulting company more on par with Verizon and AT&T in the US.
via Ars Technica http://feeds.arstechnica.com/~r/arstechnica/index/~3/gPoUEvzcK8I/