Originally published at www.seclive.com
SoftBank (OTCPK:SFTBF), the majority owner of Sprint (NYSE:S), is said to be moving forward with plans to acquire T-Mobile (NASDAQ:TMUS). The number three and four U.S. cellular providers respectively could potentially combine to more directly compete with Verizon (NYSE:VZ) and AT&T (NYSE:T). Currently Verizon and AT&T have a combined total of over 100 million customers while T-Mobile and Sprint have a combined total of approximately 100 million customers. According to sources, the deal is in the final stages between SoftBank and T-Mobile's parent company Deutsche Telekom (OTCQX:DTEGF), and would result in SoftBank becoming the world's second-largest carrier. Many analysts in the U.S. are doubtful the Department of Justice and Federal Communications Commission will approve the deal amidst concerns of preserving a competitive marketplace. A similar deal was rejected in 2011 when AT&T attempted a purchase of T-Mobile, but the recent approval of the American Airlines and US Airways merger could indicate a greater willingness to approve.
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