Telecom Operators

US government set to review proposed $26bn merger of US operators

The US government has confirmed that the proposed merger deal between telecommunication operators T-Mobile US and Sprint will undergo a forensic examination in an effort to determine whether or not the deal represents the best interests of consumers.

However, some within the ICT ecosystem in the United States have expressed their concerns over the proposed merger agreement. T-Mobile US and Sprint are the 3rd and 4th largest mobile network operators respectively in the country.

A number of leading analysts fear the proliferation of the two enterprises may give them an unfair advantage in what is already a hugely competitive telecommunications market.

In a statement, the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the Senate Committee on the Judiciary announced that they will conduct a joint hearing next month which will examine the potential impact the merger may have on consumers, workers and the wireless industry as a whole.

A number of senior US Democrat officials on both panels have highlighted that the merger would result in not only the combination of two of the four largest wireless carriers in the US, but also the combination of the largest numbers of low-income customers as part of one carrier.

The statement said, “We look forward to examining this merger from the perspective of what is in the best interest of consumers and hardworking people.”

Deutsche Telekom is the majority shareholder in T-Mobile US and the company expressed its confidence that the merger which is worth $26 billion will be closed in the first half of 2019.

The proposed merger between T-Mobile US and Sprint has already received approvals from a number of regulatory bodies, but it still needs clearance from both the US Federal Communications Commission and United States Department of Justice.