Dish Complicates Sprint-Softbank Deal with $25.5B Bid
Dish Networks today offered to purchase Sprint for $25.5 billion in cash and stock in a bid that competes with Japan's Softbank. Softbank is hoping to acquire a 70% equity stake in Sprint for about $20 billion. The deal has been under review since last year. Dish Networks' offer comes in at a 13% premium over Softbank's original terms. The deal would give control of Sprint to Dish, though there are no details yet about how the company would be structured. "Sprint is in play," said Dish Chairman Charles Ergen said in an interview in with The Wall Street Journal. "We think we've made an offer that's much more compelling than the Softbank transaction." In addition to being the CEO, Ergen is also the largest shareholder of Dish Networks. Earlier this year, Dish attempted to buy Clearwire after Sprint had already made an offer to buy the remaining shares of the struggling WiMax company. However, Sprint's take-over of Clearwire, itself a sticking point for closing the Softbank deal, is in jeopardy thanks to unsatisfied Clearwire investors. Dish has long sought to become a player in the wireless business, and it sees Sprint as the right opportunity. According to The Journal, Sprint brought in $35.3 billion in revenue in 2012, while Dish brought in only $14.3 billion. A combined entity would carry more than $36 billion in debt, which does not include a $9 billion loan Dish would take in order to purchase Sprint. Neither Sprint nor Softbank offered comment on the unsolicited bid from Dish. Sprint's executives and board of directors now have a legal obligation to pick the deal that's best for Sprint's shareholders.
T-Mobile and Dish Discussing Possible Merger
T-Mobile and Dish Networks are negotiating a potential merger between the two companies, reports the Wall Street Journal. The companies have agreed to some of the broad strokes of combining, but not the details.
Dish Seeking Cash for Possible T-Mobile Deal
Dish Networks is discussing loans of $10 to $15 billion with banks, reports the Wall Street Journal, which it would use to finance a merger with or acquisition of T-Mobile. Dish and T-Mobile are believed to be holding merger talks, though a deal is not imminent.
SoftBank Invests Another $73 Million in Sprint
SoftBank has purchased yet more shares of Sprint stock, boosting its stake in the company to just over 80%. SoftBank shelled out $73 million for about 16.8 million shares.
Verizon Not Interested In Buying Dish
Verizon does not plan to purchase Dish Networks, according to CFO Fran Shammo. When asked by the Wall Street Journal, Shammo responded, "My answer is going to be one word: No." AT&T is near to closing its acquisition of Dish competitor DirecTV.
Japan's SoftBank to Buy UK's ARM for $32 Billion
SoftBank today announced plans to buy ARM Holdings for $32 billion. SoftBank runs one of Japan's largest wireless networks and is the parent company of Sprint in the U.S., while ARM designs and licenses the Cortex-branded mobile processors often found in today's smartphones and tablets.
Well, well, well....