MASTERCLASSING

The DOJ wants T-Mobile and Sprint to create a new competitor before merger is approved

Alyssa Clementi

T-Mobile and Sprint have hit another obstacle ahead of their merger deal, which hasn’t been fully backed by the Department of Justice quite yet. According to Bloomberg, the DOJ reportedly wants T-Mobile and Sprint to “lay the groundwork” for a new wireless carrier, so that there are still four major carriers in play after the merger.

A person familiar with the matter told Bloomberg that both companies have been discussing potential concessions that would prompt the DOJ to give the merger a green light. One of these concessions would be the creation of a new competitor with its own network, to join the likes of AT&T, Verizon, and the new T-Mobile/Sprint company.

In their defense, Sprint and T-Mobile have said their merger will only create a stronger third best to Verizon and AT&T, which rank one and two in the US, respectively. While the merger continues to hit speedbump after speedbump, it does seem that T-Mobile and Sprint have won over the Federal Communications Commission.

Last week, FCC chairman Ajit Pai said the merger would now be in the best interest of the US.
Even with the FCC’s endorsements, the DOJ has not been swayed in favor of the deal, citing anti-competition concerns.