Sprint unlikely to make counter bid for MetroPCS

Sprint is unlikely to make a counter offer for MetroPCS, according to reports.

The US carrier is instead focussed on closing its $20.1 billion transaction with Softbank, three people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Sprint is said to be concerned that making a bid for MetroPCS to counter the company’s reverse merger with T-Mobile USA would complicate the ongoing regulatory review of the Softbank deal.

Once regulatory approval has been achieved Sprint may look again at acquiring MetroPCS, according to the sources.

Speculation that Sprint was eyeing a deal with MetroPCS has been rife after Sprint and Softbank delayed the filing of a proxy statement on their proposed deal to the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

The sources instead attributed the delay to negotiations between Sprint and Clearwire over interest payment and accounting implications relating to Sprint’s $480 million spectrum deal with US Cellular.

Softbank’s acquisition of a 70% stake in Sprint is expected to close in mid-2013, subject to shareholder and regulatory approval.

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