WSJ: SoftBank's Son to mount PR campaign for Sprint/T-Mobile deal


With FCC/DOJ regulators strongly suggesting they'll oppose any attempt by Sprint (S +3.1%) to merge with T-Mobile USA (TMUS +3.6%), SoftBank's (SFTBF, SFTBY) Masayoshi Son "plans to appeal directly to the U.S. business community and policy makers" to convince them the deal would be good for customers, the WSJ reports.

Crucial to Son's effort: Convincing his audience Verizon and AT&T currently have a de facto U.S. mobile duopoly, one that Sprint and T-Mobile can't challenge independently.

Likely to hurt his cause: T-Mobile is now rapidly adding postpaid subs (after losing them for years) with the help of innovative pricing schemes, and regulators reportedly fear a Sprint merger could affect T-Mobile's "maverick" status within the industry.

Sprint and T-Mobile are both outperforming today. Son plans to make a major presentation on March 11 at the Chamber of Commerce in Washington D.C.

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Comments (5)
  • MSF INVESTMENTS
    , contributor
    Comments (6729) | Send Message
     
    Consider the deal done.
    4 Mar 2014, 03:05 PM Reply Like
  • JaniceWilliams
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
     
    Your right--Good analysis to the reporter too.

     

    Still, T-Mobile will have a very interesting request in the form of a "Breakup Fee" this time around. Also, Sprint already has enough airwave rights for two Verizon/ATTs.

     

    The DoJ will likely review this very carefully. In the past, T-Mobile had European-based ownership. Overseas owners had spectrum caps, I believe. Still, if an application is submitted to the DoJ and FCC, likely there will be a LOT of concessions, divestitures requested of both network capital assets and spectrum.

     

    Verizon and AT&T need both. Still, I personally don't know why Sprint needs T-Mobile. Following the AT&T fallout, T-Mobile signed a 20-year lease with Crown Castle, a tower management and rental company. So, Sprint can lease all of T-Mobile's tower real estate. How else do you think AT&T's network got better, almost over night..? AT&T got all the benefits of a merger, but in the form of a long-term lease.

     

    I guess Sprint believes it's okay to outsource engineering, but it desires to own the tower real estate leases, and in 20 years, kick AT&T, Verizon off of the towers, leaving Sprint to control the US wireless marketplace.

     

    So, if that's Sprint's strategy, I'm not sure that Verizon and AT&T will go for that. T-Mobile worked for those leases, and build a solid metropolitan network while Sprint invested in Nascar sponsorships, and the Virgin Brand.

     

    Some assets are more valuable than others.
    10 Mar 2014, 10:23 PM Reply Like
  • slcUTAH
    , contributor
    Comments (542) | Send Message
     
    This is going to play out very interestingly. We shall wait and see. My hunch at this very moment is that the merger will be rejected.

     

    -Cheers.
    4 Mar 2014, 03:50 PM Reply Like
  • JaniceWilliams
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
     
    Good analysis.

     

    I imagine T-Mobile will have a very interesting request in the form of a "Breakup Fee".

     

    If an application is submitted to the DoJ and FCC, likely there will be a LOT of concessions.

     

    Still, I personally don't know why Sprint needs T-Mobile. Following the AT&T fallout, T-Mobile setup a 20-year lease with Crown Castle, a tower management and rental company. How else do you think AT&T's network got better, almost over night..?

     

    I guess Sprint believes it's okay to outsource engineering, but it desires to own the tower real estate leases, and in 20 years, kick AT&T, Verizon off of the towers.

     

    If that's Sprint's strategy, I'm not sure that Verizon and AT&T will go for that. T-Mobile worked plenty hard to sign those leases, and build a solid metropolitan network
    10 Mar 2014, 10:32 PM Reply Like
  • skibimamex
    , contributor
    Comments (554) | Send Message
     
    So DOJ and FCC will be put in the place of protecting the VZ-T duopoly?

     

    SB can easily preserve the "uncarrier persona" of the attacker by making the long-haired Legere the surviving CEO and the TMUS management team the primary surviving mgmt team -- Seattle will be easier to commute from Japan anyway, and 2 timezones closer.
    4 Mar 2014, 11:16 PM Reply Like
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