There has been talk about a merger between wireless carrier T-Mobile and satellite TV provider Dish Network for years, but nothing really concrete has come out of it. Well, until now.
As reported by the Wall Street Journal, apparently the two companies are in early stage talks for a possible merger. This represents the latest addition to the recent trend of communications companies combining forces. Rival wireless carrier AT&T is also in talks of buying DirecTV (also a competitor of Dish Network's) for an amount of $48.5 billion. And let us not forget Charter Communications, which is currently working out a deal worth $66 billion in order to combine with Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks.
Suffice it to say that the T-Mobile-Dish Network deal would be considered a blockbuster merger. T-Mobile is one of the big four major wireless carriers in the United States (it is currently fighting for the third spot against Sprint), while Dish Network is the second biggest satellite TV provider. If the merger pulls through, it would combine T-Mobile's 39 million subscribers with Dish Network's 13.8 million satellite TV subscribers as well as its 591,000 web customers.
Also, there are bound to be some changes, especially in terms of the organizational structure of both companies. The merged end result should see current Dish Network CEO Charlie Ergen as the chairman of the new combined company, while current T-Mobile CEO John Legere would be named as the CEO.
Because it is still in the early stage, the two companies still need to work out the details of the merger. For instance, significant details like the acquisition price, not to mention the amount of cash and quantity of stock, still need to be determined. Of course, at this stage, it is still quite possible that the talks would falter, with both parties failing to reach an agreement.
But if the deal is completed, it would definitely benefit both companies. Dish Network has always shown some interest in entering into the wireless business. As a matter of fact, the satellite TV provider attempted to purchase Sprint back in 2013, but eventually lost to Softbank, which acquired the wireless carrier for $21.6 billion. As for T-Mobile, it has always welcomed the idea of a potential merger with a TV company. Because the merger is not finalized yet, no one knows for sure what direction the combined company will be taking if they do consolidate. But as can be seen now, both parties appear to be willing to become partners in crime.
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