Government Slows Sprint Merger With T

FCC pauses 180-day shot clock on its review of T-Mobile-Sprint merger

FCC pauses 180-day shot clock on its review of T-Mobile-Sprint merger

The FCC wrote a letter to Sprint and T-Mobile on Tuesday, stating that it was pausing the informal 180-day clock for reviewing mergers, as it needs more time to review the proposed deal.

"Additional time is necessary to allow for thorough staff and third-party review of newly-submitted and anticipated modeling relied on by the Applicants", the commission wrote in a letter to the companies.

This is because the two companies recently submitted new materials to the FCC and it needs time to go through those materials before approving this deal.

The FCC said the extra time is needed to assess updated engineering and economic modeling information submitted in connection with the merger.

T-Mobile and Sprint - a subsidiary of Japan's SoftBank - are at present the third and fourth largest U.S. wireless operators, respectively.

Lawrence says the new network engineering model is significantly larger and more complex than the previous submission.

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A business model detailing how the combined firm would provide "financial basis for the projected new network buildup" wasn't submitted until September 5. "Although the applicants had previously provided a network engineering model as backup for certain network claims, you explained that since that time "the model has been extended, ' and that the newly-provided model 'completes" the prior work".

The merger is also under review by the US Department of Justice.

What just happened? The merger between T-Mobile and Sprint will take a bit longer to get the green light from the FCC.

T-Mobile John Legere and Sprint's Marcelo Claure at the press conference announcing the merger.

T-Mobile said in a statement that it looked forward to working with the FCC in the review process. The Commission did not receive Build 9, and third parties did not have access to it, until September 5. "We are confident that this transaction is pro-competitive, good for the country and good for American consumers", the company said.

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