Deal Could Still Be Blocked by DC District Court and CPUC
Washington, D.C. – Today, Judge Victor Marrero, of the District Court for the Southern District of New York, approved the proposed merger between T-Mobile and Sprint. The Rural Wireless Association, Inc. disagrees with Judge Marrero’s decision to approve this deal, which has been consistently and drastically altered from what was originally proposed in early 2018, and now includes Dish, a company that has zero experience operating as a facilities-based mobile wireless carrier network as the savior for wireless competition. The proposed “Dish Fix” is an unartful attempt to remedy the competitive harms to the market place as Dish has limited assets and even fewer incentives to buildout its own network. This court has ignored the clear evidence from the record demonstrating the harm that will befall consumers, particularly rural consumers. With only some concessions by T-Mobile and Sprint to sell off parts of their business to Dish, the consolidation will result in the US having only three viable national wireless carriers, which in the long game will result in price increases for all consumers in the US.
After months of litigation, the State AGs held strong against political pressure and did the right thing for all consumers by refusing to settle for inconsequential concessions. As RWA and numerous other telecommunications industry participants have explained, New T-Mobile’s proposed self-imposed “verification and enforcement regime” does not ensure that the merged company will uphold any of its numerous promises made to the FCC and DOJ. The parties still must await the Tunney Act Review decision in the DC District Court as well as approval from the California Public Utilities Commission on this anticompetitive deal.