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Deutsche Telekom thinking of merging T-Mobile USA with Sprint?

Darren Murph
March 8, 2011
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It ain't as crazy as you may think. If you'll recall, we actually heard last month that Deutsche Telekom was mulling the idea of spinning off T-Mobile USA from its portfolio, and now it looks as if one carrier in particular is interested. According to the inimitable "people with knowledge of the matter," Bloomberg Businessweek is reporting that Deutsche Telekom has gone ahead with talks to "sell its T-Mobile USA unit to Sprint in exchange for a major stake in the combined entity." Granted, there's no guarantees at this point that the two will actually reach a deal that sits well with both boards, and up until now, they haven't been able to come to terms with T-Mob's valuation. As the story goes, Deutsche Telekom has purportedly said that it could sell "all or part of the US business, and all options are open." Meanwhile, Sprint's remaining mum. A merger of these two would combine the number three and four players in America, but if that doesn't pan out, T-Mobile USA may end up buying wireless spectrum from Clearwire as an alternative. We're hearing that an outright sale of T-Mobile in the US is pretty much off of the table, but considering just how many backroom talks are apparently going on in both camps, we won't be surprised until they tell us to be.

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