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May 05, 2008

T-Mobile Looking at Sprint Acquisition

By Gary Kim, Contributing Editor

Deutsche Telekom (News - Alert) is looking at the possible purchase of Sprint Nextel, according to Der Spiegel. This isn’t necessarily saying DT will proceed, or that the deal will happen, but,if it were to happen, it would be a transformational acquisition in a couple ways.

The upside is a chance for T-Mobile (News - Alert) USA to leap into first place in the U.S. market, rather than remaining clearly in fourth place, where is seems destined to stay without a major move. As of late 2006, AT&T (News - Alert) has 26 percent market share, Verizon 25 percent, Sprint Nextel 23 percent, and T-Mobile USA 11 percent.
The move also would change T-Mobile from a German company to what essentially would become predominantly a U.S. company.
Regardless of whether Deutsche Telekom has real aspirations to this end, there are additional questions as to whether the transaction would pass regulatory muster in the U.S. Not to mention significant issues integrating three different wireless interfaces.
Gary Kim (News - Alert) is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Gary’s articles, please visit his columnist page.
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