Deutsche Telekom in talks to sell T-Mobile USA to Sprint and keep a stake in the resulting carrier

Deutsche Telekom in talks to sell T-Mobile USA to Sprint and keep a stake in the resulting carrier
T-Mobile USA's owner Deutsche Telekom is reportedly exploring different options for America's 4th largest carrier, including selling it to Sprint, and keeping 50% stake, or buying wireless spectrum from Clearwire.

The talks are ongoing, and nothing is certain at this point, but Sprint Nextel's shares are up 7% today on the rumor. The major bickering is going on around T-Mobile USA's exact valuation. Big Magenta lost 56 000 customers last year, while all other carriers gained subscribers. The other issue is that Deutsche Telekom wants to have a 50% stake in the resulting carrier - Sprint and T-Mobile have a combined revenue of $54 billion for 2010.

The parent company of T-Mo is also exploring buying a huge chunk of wireless spectrum from Clearwire, which Sprint is using to provide its 4G WiMAX service, if the merger with Sprint doesn't pan out. Sprint, in its turn, is looking to buy 4G spectrum from LightSquared, which is a huge wholesale 4G LTE provider.

We will see how this all will end up, but if the acquisition of T-Mobile by Sprint goes through, the resulting carrier will have around 83 million subscribers, still less than those of AT&T or Verizon, plus their 3G and 4G technologies are rather different.

source: Bloomberg



1. bbonline

Posts: 38; Member since: Feb 24, 2011

WOW if this happened! The wireless landscape in America will be changed A LOT. Talk about 3 telecommunication POWERHOUSES in the USA. I think it's better for struggling T-Mobile and even Sprint. I'd say: Go for it. We need some major competition to the BIG 2.

2. bbonline

Posts: 38; Member since: Feb 24, 2011

This will be a good opportunity to disassociate from their current names (especially Sprint). I think that carrier has the current reputation due to its name only. S-Mobile?

3. cornerofthemoon

Posts: 620; Member since: Apr 20, 2010

I'm sure the merger would go just as well as Sprint Nextel.

4. Maestro716

Posts: 10; Member since: Mar 08, 2011

I'm sorry, but your sarcasm was lost due to the fact that you're an ill-informed moron

7. cornerofthemoon

Posts: 620; Member since: Apr 20, 2010

My apologies Maestro God of all Knowledge (bowing gesture)

25. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

actually, id say the morons are the ones that think this is a good idea. i too, think it will be like sprint/nextel. you have: Sprint on CDMA and WiMaxx Tmobile on GSM and HSPA+ neither tech is compatable with the other. SO one network will have to be torn down/sold off and the other one rebuffed like crazy for the onslaught of new customers. Expect tons of network issues. Then theres the devices issue. Everyone on the network that got torn down needs a new device, and since the network is forcing the upgrade, it better damn well be free for just about any phone. Now the network has to pay for 30 million new phones for free. Then there is the plan compatibility issue, billing issues, account issues in general, business account issues, ect ect ect ect Oh yea, then there is this last issue. Sprint is a HIGH DEBT company that just got its credit lowered. It cant AFFORD to buy T-mobile anyways. Even if it could, neither company has a lot of spare money so who the hell is going to pay for all the aforementioned crap?? This has about as much of a chance as apple installing android on the iphone5.

30. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

I see a lot of the negatives that you already mentioned. However... if Sprint can get the valuation of T-Mo down low enough, and D-T is serious about wanting to own 50% of the resulting company, D-T will have to pony up some cash.... Guess what Sprint needs most right about now?

31. Maestro716

Posts: 10; Member since: Mar 08, 2011

Unless you're a data analyst or accountant for one of these companies, then I think it's safe to say that you really have no idea who can and cant afford to acquire another entity.

36. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

well maestro, if you pay attention to the news, you would see thats where ive gotten my info. And yea, I do work for one of those companys. Ive worked for multiple cell companys. There isnt anything i mentioned that isnt true, if you like it or not. The ONLY way the deal would make sence is if they put themselves on a mirrored LTE path and stayed as 2 seperate operating entities until they could launch all LTE phones. At that point, it would be smarter to sell off/convert sprint's CDMA towers and make them all GSM as Tmobile's HSPA+ is infinately faster than CDMA 3g. Also, i would get rid of both company names and start with something fresh. Maybe Purple Runner (get it.. magenta +

41. Anon MBA unregistered

Maestro716: You really are the ill-informed moron based on your posts. The potential deal can be structured as a merger by issuing new shares of stock under consolidation accounting (since pooling of interest is no longer accepted under US GAAP) and no new debt would have to be issued. This topic is typically covered under Investment Banking or Corporate Finance in any top ranked graduate business program -- meaning you don't have to be a data analyst or an accountant. You just have to understand valuation at the corporate level or have worked as a "securities" analyst.

43. Maestro716

Posts: 10; Member since: Mar 08, 2011

haha you guys crack me up. Publications are NEVER a true insight when it comes to a companies worth or potential growth pattern. In other words published numbers are often farce. So, sorry to inform you guys but I highly doubt anyone on the site is informed enough about these companies wealth to make a rash statement and assume their ability to successfully acquire another company.

40. iFone unregistered

Hey, Having an iPhone 5 that dual boots iOS and Android would be the best decision Apple would ever make.

42. Anon MBA unregistered

Sprint can issue stock (meaning stock is the acquisition currency) in exchange for T-mobile's assets such that DT ends up owning 50% of the combined entity. In such a situation, the credit rating of the combined Sprint-T Mobile will be upgraded due to the following factors: -- Greater cash flow to support Sprint's existing debt load (assuming DT retains some of the debt of T-Mobile) -- Greater diversification of cash flow since the customer mix well be better balanced such as consumer/business, based on geography, etc. -- Reduced competition since the combined entity will have to spend less on advertising than before -- there's so many other reasons that would demonstrate that the credit protection measures have STRENGTHEN due to the combined entity The key here is spectrum since access to the sprecturm generates value. Over time, the technologies will be worked out. Despite what people think or believe, the fact remains spectrum is limited and thus has value in a world of 4G and cloud computing. If people understand the concept of "distruptive technology" -- have unlimited data at 4G speed would reduce the need to have 32G or 64G flash memory and thus reduce the price of smart phones.

51. ssjassassin

Posts: 108; Member since: Aug 31, 2009

Chances are they would sell off any spectrum that could not be used for whatever network is stronger. This would free up some debt and allow them to also consider the purchase of a 4g wholesaler. This would go down with growing pains though the outcome for T-Mobile and Sprint customers could be great if it where handled well. I would expect that GSM will win through over the CDMA because of its scalability compared to CDMA. I would think that many of these regional carriers will find the assets they sell off as a valuable investment too so don't think buyers are not out there.

5. Waooooooooooooo PR unregistered

niceeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee now sprint will goooooooooPink eso eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

6. Waooooooooooooo PR unregistered

but i wil say the correct name for the new company should be Sprint Mobile niceeeeeee nice and it will be the sport power house can you imagen for one secound the NBA and the NASCAR on the new Sprint mobile nice genteeeee esooooo eeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!

8. Box unregistered

This makes no sense. Why would they want to sell to a company that is losing money, who made a poor choice for their 4G LTE partner, killed the one thing they had going good for them (Nextel), and have a completely different technology type? If anyone should be buying T-Mobile (and hopefully they won't have to), it should be AT&T

19. pedrocruzmail

Posts: 1; Member since: Mar 08, 2011

Sprint oready did that been there done that they did that when they merger wiht Nextel few years back think about that it only make sences they posision then self in the race to the 1 places ad the 3D tech the money and you will get the Sprint Mobile niceeeeeeeeee

23. Slammer

Posts: 1515; Member since: Jun 03, 2010

This makes more sense than you think. Sprint chose WiMAX because it was a ready technology. They had to meet a government time frame to utilize spectrum holdings. LTE simply was not available. Just concept in talks for the US. LTE and WiMAX a very similar in base functions and operability. Far closer than GSM vs CDMA. Sprint has already gone on record for saying an LTE direction is not out of the question. To switch, would be very easy. TMO has stressed LTE. In order for both companies to increase in sales, market share and subscriber base, a union is far more realistic than not. There are many that don't want to see a unification of these two companies. However, if an individual is in favor of consumer advocacy, this partnership is indeed far more sensible than meets the eye. ATT buying up TMO won't happen. It would seriously breach the competitive market and place a monopoly in ATT's favor. People need to quell the Nextel/Sprint merge from their heads and dissolve any negativity of Sprint. They are now #1 in customer satisfaction. Thier aggressive tenure on moving forward, is very commendable. Lately, their decisions have been superb. To combine TMO and Sprint, would definitely shake up the industry for the better. John B.

46. William13

Posts: 27; Member since: Mar 10, 2011

First of all, this is all merely speculation. Second, Sprint's Network Vision will allow the consolidation of numerous networks at a very low rate. If everyone claiming to follow news reports really did, they would have considered that fact. Network Vision will save Sprint over $1B in operating costs per year just by consolidating iDEN and CDMA. WiMax will also be factored in, and if T-Mobile is acquired, it will go much smoother than the Sprint Nextel merger because of this. Sprint's own executive board has made numerous comments have even mentioned the simplicity in which Network Vision will allow GSM to be consolidated into Sprint's current networks. This is also why they are seriously considering converting to LTE in the next couple years. I love all the business analysts (both sides saying it's impossible AND inevitable) in a forum for nerdy phone fanboys (myself not excluded). Also, the Sprint Nextel merger happened under Gary Forsee, who was known for his bonehead business decisions. Dan Hesse isn't one to look at a move seriously unless it's been researched thoroughly. Regardless, IF it does happen, it won't be for 2-3 years according to analysts at Goldman Sachs, so it's a non-issue for now.

26. AndroidTroll

Posts: 359; Member since: Mar 05, 2011

I agree that Sprint fucked over Nextel but who cares PTT sucks (unless you work in emergency services and rely on iDEN on a daily basis). Will be interesting to see what Sprint has in store for its new PTT that it will be releasing later this year. Lets just hope that its better than Qchat lololololol!!!

37. shrumph unregistered

How did Sprint fuck over Nextel exactly? That network was DOA.

9. cornerofthemoon

Posts: 620; Member since: Apr 20, 2010

I'm curious what sort of color Magenta and Yellow would make if mixed together. There must be an app for that.

14. bbonline

Posts: 38; Member since: Feb 24, 2011

It would be orange. I like the name Orange for a carrier. There is a carrier in Europe with that name. Orange Wireless? Sounds good to me...

17. cornerofthemoon

Posts: 620; Member since: Apr 20, 2010

I actually blended it in Photoshop...It looks like Pink Grapefruit.

10. cornerofthemoon

Posts: 620; Member since: Apr 20, 2010

Perhaps they'll brag about the acquisition of T-Mobile and all of it's network goodies and then spend the next few years trying to find a way to shut it down.

11. calamazoo unregistered

so what's gonna happen with the t-mobile chick? she hot!

16. cornerofthemoon

Posts: 620; Member since: Apr 20, 2010

Perhaps Sprint will pair her together with James Franco.

12. snowgator

Posts: 3621; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

GSM or CDMA? Would it actually benefit Sprint in any market it is not already in? Would it make the LTE easier? Would David Blane be invited back for the merger presentation? What color would magenta and yellow make? Come to think of it, what is magenta? Interesting news, but rumors this early don't mean much. Can't say it ain't a neat thought, but how do this two actually compliment each other?

13. snowgator

Posts: 3621; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

cornerofthemoon gets all credit for color scheme debates.....

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