Dish Network, T-Mobile US reportedly in merger talks

The merger would be the latest in a wave of consolidation in the U.S. media and communications industry

Satellite TV service provider Dish Network and wireless carrier T-Mobile US are reportedly in talks for a merger, which could be the latest in a wave of consolidation in the media and communications industry.

The two sides are said to have agreed that Dish CEO Charlie Ergen, will become the chairman of the merged entity, while T-Mobile CEO John Legere will be appointed as the CEO of the combined companies, The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.

The talks were described to the newspaper as in "the formative stage," with no guarantee that a deal will be finally done. Key issues such as the purchase price and the mix of cash and stock that would be used to pay for the deal are still unresolved, people familiar with the matter told the newspaper.

The deal makes perfect sense, wrote Jan Dawson, chief analyst at Jackdaw Research, in an email. T-Mobile and Dish ran the risk of becoming the lone single-service providers left in the market, with everyone else combining TV, broadband and wireless, he added.

Charter Communications said last month it plans to acquire Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks in a deal that, if approved, would create the second-biggest cable operator in the U.S. AT&T is also awaiting approval for its planned deal for Dish rival DirecTV, which aims to create a leading provider of content across mobile, video and broadband platforms. The combined company aims to cover 70 million customer locations by its broadband expansion and be a stronger alternative to cable with a better customer experience.

Dish has previously had ambitions to enter into the telecommunications market, when it bid against SoftBank in 2013 to purchase Sprint Nextel. SoftBank eventually won and acquired Sprint. Dish also made a failed pitch for Clearwire.

Dish and T-Mobile could not be immediately reached for comment on the WSJ report.

While T-Mobile has a growing subscriber base and network but not enough spectrum, Dish has lots of spectrum and no network, so their assets are very complementary, Dawson of Jackdaw said. The merger would also help overcome some of T-Mobile's lack of scale in comparison to its larger competitors like AT&T and Verizon.

Dish saw its pay-TV business flagging in the first quarter, closing the quarter with nearly 13.8 million pay-TV subscribers, down from over 14 million at the end of the first quarter of 2014. It had approximately 591,000 broadband customers at the end of the quarter. T-Mobile added 1.8 million subscribers in the first quarter, which was its eighth consecutive quarter of net additions of over 1 million customers.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags business issuesDISH Networktelecommunicationt-mobileinternetMergers and acquisitions

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Ribeiro

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?