T-Mobile US and Sprint expect to extend a July 29 deadline to complete their $26-billion merger, Reuters reported.
T-Mobile, the third largest wireless operator, and Sprint, the fourth operator, have agreed to a series of deal concessions, including the sale of the prepaid brand Boost, to gain merger approval from US authorities.
Dish Network, which is struggling with its wireless spectrum, is one of the contenders. T-Mobile and Sprint still need approval from the U.S. Department of Justice for the merger. The department’s antitrust staff recommended the agency block the deal.
T-Mobile and Deutsche Telekom are seeking to prevent the sale of their divested assets to a cable or technology company, the Wall Street Journal reported. T-Mobile does not want retail chain Amazon to acquire its wireless assets.
The Justice Department has indicated that it wants the new telecom competitor to be strong enough to compete with Verizon Communications, AT&T and T-Mobile if this merger goes through.
The Federal Communications Commission’s chairman Ajit Pai has indicated that the agency would support the merger in principle. FCC, according to media reports, is expected to circulate a formal order within weeks.
Several states are opposing the proposed merger, arguing that the deal would cost consumers more than $4.5 billion annually.