30 April 2018
| Alan Burkitt-Gray
Deutsche Telekom’s T-Mobile US is to take over SoftBank’s Sprint in a non-cash deal that will create a powerful US mobile operator to compete with Verizon and AT&T.
In the deal, announced on Sunday, the new company – temporarily called New T-Mobile US – will be smaller than the other two but will be within meaningful competing distance, especially as they all start to roll out 5G.
Both sides – John Legere, CEO of T-Mobile US, Marcelo Claure, CEO of Sprint – emphasised on a specially ceated website that the merger would help the roll-out of 5G. The combined company will continue T-Mobile US’s Un-Carrier theme, introduced by Legere – and believed to be significant in strengthening Deutsche Telekom’s negotiating hand with SoftBank because of its success in attracting customers.
Neither side, however, has talked about the potential impact on the global carrier and wholesale market. Both Deutsche Telekom and Sprint have Tier One networks. CAIDA, the Center for Applied Internet Data Analysis, ranks Deutsche Telekom at number 15 in the world out of 40 and Sprint at number 28.