After winning in court a couple months back, nothing was going to stop T-Mobile from polishing off its purchase of Sprint. So pandemic or no pandemic, the deal was officially closed today and where there were 4 there are now 3 – at least until Dish follows through.
T-Mobile will now be able to redirect both companies’ assets toward rolling out 5G nationwide. As part of the deal they promised to have it rolled out to 95-97% of the US population within three years, and 99% after three more. There’s plenty of work to do on that front. But there’s also a lot of integration work to do with Sprint, and that’s always been expected to be messy.
Frankly, it’s a lot easier to make the case for the merger on paper than it will be to implement it on the ground. And for the moment they’ll be doing it while also practicing ‘social distancing’. Just how they manage that integration should be interesting to watch throughout the remainder of this year.
But the completion of the deal will come with a change at the top. John Legere is stepping down a bit earlier than anticipated, giving way to Mike Sievert who will become the new CEO. Legere has led T-Mobile US since 2012, taking over a little less than a year after selling Global Crossing to Level 3. He successfully rejuvenated the company, turned it into the ‘Un-carrier’, and generally disrupted the industry in T-Mobile’s favor.
Legere will continue on the board of directors at least through June, but beyond that his plans are unclear. I’m sure he’ll turn up somewhere.
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