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Will Dish Network Become a National Wireless Carrier?


Jul. 29 2019, Updated 7:30 a.m. ET

Dish Network 

On June 18, Bloomberg reported that Dish Network (DISH) is in talks to pay ~$6 billion for T-Mobile (TMUS) and Sprint’s (S) assets. The companies are divesting the assets to win regulatory approval for their merger agreement.

Citing people familiar with the matter, Bloomberg said, “Dish could announce a deal as soon as this week for assets including wireless spectrum and Sprint’s Boost Mobile brand.” Bloomberg also said, “The potential divestitures are aimed at appeasing the Justice Department, which wants T-Mobile and Sprint to sell enough assets to ensure that the U.S. maintains at least four viable wireless players.”

On June 12, Bloomberg reported that Dish Network had been on a shortlist of bidders favored by the Department of Justice for Sprint and T-Mobile’s assets. Altice USA (ATUS) and Charter Communications (CHTR) were also on the list.

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Merger concerns

Sprint and T-Mobile have already promised to sell the Boost Mobile prepaid wireless brand to get approval from the Federal Communications Commission. The companies also have to win over the Department of Justice. There are concerns that the merger could harm the competition and raise prices for consumers.

Currently, T-Mobile and Sprint are negotiating with the Department of Justice. Last week, ten states sued to block the proposed merger deal due to antitrust concerns.

Dish Network stock rose ~0.3% and closed at $39.10 on June 18. T-Mobile stock rose ~1.6% to $76.44, while Sprint stock rose ~1.8% to $7.23.


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