Sprint reportedly second-guessing T-Mobile deal

After facing an intense level of opposition from regulators, Sprint's leadership is taking a look at whether a deal still makes sense.

Lynn La/CNET

Sprint may be second-guessing its push to acquire T-Mobile after encountering stiff resistance from regulators.

That's according to The Wall Street Journal, which reported that Sprint officials were regrouping after recently meeting with the Justice Department and Federal Communications Commission in Washington, DC.

Sprint Chairman Masayoshi Son and CEO Dan Hesse had hoped to win over regulators and at least get a fair shake at the regulatory approval for the deal, but antitrust officials expressed strong sentiments against it, the WSJ reported, citing unnamed sources.

Sprint declined to comment.

Sprint and T-Mobile have both argued that a merger would create a larger No. 3 carrier that could more effectively compete against AT&T and Verizon Wireless. But regulators have been on keen on keeping four national carriers in the field.

An argument against the deal would be the recent success that T-Mobile has shown in adding customers. Despite its position as the smallest carrier, its combination of aggressive pricing, a loud and abrasive marketing campaign (at least to its rivals), and improved network has fueled a resurgence.

Sprint and parent SoftBank both report earnings this week.

Updated at 6:56 a.m. PT to include a response from Sprint.

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About the author

Roger Cheng is the executive editor in charge of breaking news for CNET News. Prior to this, he was on the telecommunications beat and wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal for nearly a decade. He's a devoted Trojan alum and Los Angeles Lakers fan.

 

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