New York District Court Approves T-Mobile/Sprint Merger


Judge Victor Marrero of the District Court for the Southern District of New York has approved the proposed merger between T-Mobile and Sprint. The Judge, rejecting the arguments of the States that the deal would hurt competition in the wireless market and force consumers to pay higher prices, concluded that the proposed merger is not reasonably likely to substantially lessen competition in the wireless services market. Instead, the Judge asserted that the merger would allow the merged company “to continue T-Mobile’s undeniably successful business strategy for the foreseeable future.” The Judge also noted that Sprint, while making valiant attempts to stay competitive, is falling short of the targets it must hit to remain competitive. Stating that the FCC and DOJ have closely scrutinized the transaction and expended considerable energy and resources to arrange the entry of DISH as a fourth nationwide competitor, the Judge found the merger is lawful. Accordingly, the Judge concluded that the States failed to prove a violation of Section 7 of the Clayton Act, and declined to enjoin the acquisition of Sprint by T-Mobile.  T-Mobile and Sprint must still get approval of the deal from the California Public Utilities Commission.


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