T-Mobile/Sprint Merger Clears Hurdle, as Huawei Is Shunned

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1Q 2019 | IN-5348


The U.S. CFIUS Clears the Merger


The U.S. Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) has cleared the proposed US$25.6 billion merger between T-Mobile and Sprint, paving the way for a merger of the country’s third- and fourth-largest mobile operators. Approvals are still required from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the Justice Department. If the two companies receive those approvals, then T-Mobile expects the deal to close during 1H 2019.

What Has That Got to Do with Huawei?


Neither T-Mobile nor Sprint operate their networks in the United States using any Huawei equipment; however, the devil is in the details. Sprint’s parent company is Japan-based SoftBank and T-Mobile’s parent is Deutsche Telekom (DT) in Germany, both of which do use Huawei equipment.

Press reports indicate that U.S. government officials had been pressuring both DT and SoftBank to put a halt to their use of Huawei equipment based on the suspicion that Chinese-originated equipment poses a security risk. …

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