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Dish Network’s Interest in T-Mobile Could Be A Game-Changer

August 25th, 2014

As Sprint’s failed attempt to acquire T-Mobile failed — and resulted in strengthening T-Mobile as a Sprint competitor no less — there has been fierce fighting over who might acquire or even merge with the broadband spectrum-rich company.

T-Mobile now has its focus squarely on overtaking Sprint and becoming the third-largest wireless telecommunications carrier in the United States.

The rumor mill is gearing up, once again, and it could be noted that a new potential suitor for T-Mobile has emerged: the Satellite television provider Dish Network. The DirecTV competitor seems to be the front-runner for T-Mobile, now that a deal with Sprint is off the table. Indeed, there are several potential benefits for Dish that make a lot of sense for the two companies to join forces.

Dish is the second-largest satellite television provider in the country. But not all is well; in fact, during the past several months, cord cutting among consumers has gone from anecdote to clear-and-present danger. Because of this, stand-alone pay-TV providers face a real threat. That was the impetus for DIRECTV partnering with AT&T, and it’s for that same reason that Dish covets T-Mobile.

It’s been reported that Dish Network is absolutely looking to pursue T-Mobile, and evidence seems to support it.

Speaking on Dish’s second-quarter earnings conference call, Mr. Ergen acknowledged Dish’s interest “to the extent that Sprint either dropped out or wasn’t interested or the government wouldn’t allow it.” He declined to comment about whether Dish has previously approached T-Mobile but said that with relatively few players in the wireless industry “you could assume that everybody talks to everybody.”

He hinted, however, that he may prefer to partner with Sprint. While “you have to have a lot of respect for what T-Mobile’s done…I think Sprint is capable of much, much more,” Mr. Ergen said.

Mr. Ergen made a run for Sprint last year but lost out to SoftBank in a bidding war. Since then, Dish and Sprint have made peace, even embarking on a small-scale trial project to test wireless broadband that is set to begin within a month. Both Mr. Ergen and Sprint Chairman Masayoshi Son have indicated that there are ways for the two companies to work together.

Categories: DISH & TV news

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