Mobile, Sprint close to agreeing deal terms

Business executives shaking hands

Sprint and T-Mobile are close to agreeing to a deal to merge two of the four largest US wireless carriers, Reuters reports, citing multiple sources familiar with the negotiations.

Among details Faber cited was that Sprint's majority owner, SoftBank Group (9984JP), wants to have a hand in shaping the combined company.

At 1255 BST, Sprint shares were up 4% in pre-market trade to $8.35 while T-Mobile was up 1.3% to $64.20.

The combination is expected to get close regulatory scrutiny to see whether the wireless market is getting too concentrated. And much of that talk has centered on some kind of merger between the nation's two smaller major wireless carriers.

A successful merger would create a business with more than 130 million subscribers, just behind Verizon Communications Inc (VZ.N) and AT&T Inc (T.N). T-Mobile CEO John Legere would likely be the one to lead the combined T-Mobile-Sprint. Revenues would top $70 billion and, say analysts, there would be massive scope to cut costs. That deal would have left SoftBank in control of the unified company, with T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom a minority shareholder.

- Sprint tried to acquire T-Mobile in 2014, but dropped its offer in the face of USA regulatory opposition.

Hot on the heels of a rumor that claimed that T-Mobile and Sprint are in "active talks" about a merger, another report claims that an agreement is near.

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