Sprint Exploring Bid For T-Mobile, Sources Say

A Sprint store in Springfield | Photo by Nicole Lunger
Photo by Nicole Lunger

SoftBank Corp. CEO Masayoshi Son is exploring a deal for Sprint Corp. to buy the majority of T-Mobile US Inc. in 2014, and Son has discussed financing a bid with banks, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg. Son, who is looking for about $20 billion to finance a bid, has met with the same six banks that helped finance and advise on SoftBank’s purchase of Overland Park, Kan.-based Sprint.

The plan would be to take control of T-Mobile by paying cash for the 67 percent stake owned by Deutsche Telekom AG, said the people. Sprint would then be integrated with T-Mobile, combining the third- and fourth-largest U.S. wireless carriers.

Deutsche Telekom has said that it’s prepared to sell its $16 billion stake in T-Mobile, which has mostly been an unprofitable U.S. outpost for the German phone giant. Sprint management also is reluctant to integrate T-Mobile, a move that would require merging incompatible networks, one of the people said.

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