Technology

SoftBank to halt Sprint's T-Mobile merger talks, Nikkei says

SoftBank to halt Sprint's T-Mobile merger talks, Nikkei says

Investors have cheered on a combination of T-Mobile, the third-largest United States wireless carrier, with No. 4 Sprint as a way to cut costs and forge a bigger competitor to take on AT&T Inc and Verizon Communications Inc.

SoftBank Group plans to halt talks to merge USA unit Sprint Corp. with T-Mobile US because of disagreements over ownership of the combined company, Nikkei reported, without saying where it got the information.

As reported by Nikkei, citing a source familiar with the situation, Deutsche Telekom - which owns a 66 per cent majority of T-Mobile US - had insisted on owning a controlling stake in the merged company. SoftBank appeared to be receptive to an arrangement that would that would give Deutsche Telekom control as long as it retained some clout in the combined company.

Sprint shares sank 9.5 percent in NY trading, while T-Mobile fell 5.5 percent.

SoftBank will propose ending the talks as early as Tuesday, Nikkei said.

According to tentative terms of the deal that Reuters was first meant to report last month, Sprint Shareholders and SoftBank would have received near about 40% or bit extra with the joined company.

SoftBank founder and CEO Masayoshi Son previously withdraw an attempt to purchase T-Mobile back in 2014, amid U.S. regulator customer concerns. The merger was less critical for T-Mobile. T-Mobile has been making market share gains since launching its Un-carrier strategy a few years ago.

If the discussions fall apart then it would be the second time a failed attempt made in merging T-mobile and Sprint.

Bonn, Germany-based Deutsche Telekom has maintained throughout the talks this year with SoftBank that it should maintain control of the combined company.


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