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USA to take longer to review Sprint merger with T

14 September 2018

But after about 55 days into the process, the Commission has outlined a few reasons why it needs more time to review the merger.

The third- and fourth-largest wireless United States service providers submitted their Public Interest Statement to the FCC in June, but the commission has now said it is pausing the informal 180-day "transaction shot clock", which is currently at day 56, following recent submissions related to a revised network engineering model. (S) has been put on hold by The Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

The $26 billion deal between the two U.S. wireless carriers, which would shrink the wireless market to three big players from four, is also being reviewed by the U.S. Justice Department.

The companies had unsuccessfully tried to merge in 2014 and 2017, with regulators stopping the first attempt and disagreement over how much control the companies would have nixing the deal on the second attempt.

The FCC said Tuesday it was pausing the review clock - now at Day 55 - because the two companies had submitted new information including a "substantially revised" network engineering model, a new business model and additional economic modeling.

The newly-provided network engineering model is significantly larger and more complex than the engineering submissions already in the record.

Until we see what T-Mobile has submitted, we won't know if this marks a minor revision or a wholesale change to T-Mobile's plans that could force a particularly thorough review. Both submissions were received on September 5. "This new economic modeling will also require additional time for review". The pair claim that the move will benefit the public by, among other things, increasing the rollout speed of their 5G networks.

T-Mobile recently disclosed that it intends to submit additional economic modeling in support of the Applications, beyond that strictly responsive to the various economic analyses in the Petitions to Deny. "We are confident that this transaction is pro-competitive, good for the country and good for American consumers".

USA to take longer to review Sprint merger with T