TELECOMS

Dish, T-Mobile Agree Sprint Asset Sale Deadline

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Satellite service provider Dish Network and T-Mobile US laid to rest speculation a deal involving the sale of Sprint’s prepaid assets was in jeopardy by setting a new completion date for the transaction.

In a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Dish Network stated the pair agreed to complete the deal on 1 July after amending an agreement originally struck in July 2019 as part of a deal to secure the Department of Justice’s blessing for the T-Mobile-Sprint merger.

Multiple news outlets reported the transaction was in trouble after Dish Network chairman Charlie Ergen pushed T-Mobile for last-minute concessions.

In its own SEC filing, T-Mobile noted the DoJ intervened to force Dish Network’s hand, confirming the operator met its obligations under the original terms.

The amended deal provides the caveat either company can terminate the agreement if the transaction is not completed on 1 July.

Dish Network will pay approximately US$5 billion for Sprint assets comprised of US$1.4 billion for its prepaid businesses and US$3.6 billion for its 800MHz spectrum. The satellite company will be able to offer mobile service via a seven-year MVNO agreement with T-Mobile while it builds a standalone 5G network.

In May, Ergen said Dish Network aimed to launch prepaid service in at least one market by the end of 2020, with a post-paid offer to follow in 2021.

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