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DOJ To Approve T-Mobile/Sprint Merger Despite 13 States Trying To Block It

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: The Justice Department plans to approve the T-Mobile/Sprint merger as part of a settlement involving the sale of spectrum licenses, wholesale access, and a prepaid wireless business to Dish Network, The Wall Street Journal reported today. “The companies have spent weeks negotiating with antitrust enforcers and each other over the sale of assets to Dish to satisfy concerns that the more than $26 billion merger of the No. 3 and No. 4 wireless carriers by subscribers would hurt competition,” the Journal wrote, citing people familiar with the matter. As a result of those negotiations, the DOJ is “poised to approve” the merger and could announce a settlement with T-Mobile and Sprint “as soon as this week, but the timing remains uncertain,” the Journal wrote. Even if the DOJ approves the merger, T-Mobile and Sprint will still have to defend it in court because of a lawsuit filed against them by 13 states and the District of Columbia. The Wall Street Journal report said the pending settlement “provides for Dish to acquire prepaid subscribers” but didn’t say whether those will come from Boost. “Boost’s involvement seems likely, given that FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s approval of the T-Mobile/Sprint merger is contingent on the divestiture of Boost Mobile and a guarantee that Boost will have access to the T-Mobile/Sprint network,” reports Ars Technica.

“Dish would also get a multiyear agreement to use the wireless companies’ network while it builds dedicated infrastructure,” the Journal wrote. The report didn’t say how much spectrum Dish will get.


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