Two weeks after Dish Network jumped into the bidding for Sprint with a $25.5 billion offer, the wireless carrier has formed a special committee and received a waiver from SoftBank to consider the deal. (You may recall that SoftBank bid $20.1 billion for Sprint earlier this year).
“The waiver will permit Sprint and its representatives, including the Special Committee of the Sprint board, to enter into a non-disclosure agreement and discussions with DISH for the purpose of clarifying and obtaining further information from DISH regarding its proposal made on April 15, 2013,” a press release says. “The SoftBank waiver does not permit Sprint to provide non-public information to DISH nor does it enable Sprint to enter into negotiations with DISH. Such actions may be taken by Sprint only in accordance with the Sprint-SoftBank merger agreement.”
Any deal with Sprint would have impact in the Seattle area. Just last week, MetroPCS shareholders approved a merger deal with T-Mobile USA, the country’s fourth largest carrier behind Sprint.
Dish also is trying to gobble up Clearwire for $3.30 per share, slightly more than $2.97 per share offer from Sprint now on the table.
Where will all of this settle out? Too soon to say, but it is certainly a drama worth watching.
“The Dish proposal clearly presents Sprint shareholders with a superior alternative to the pending SoftBank proposal,” said Charlie Ergen, chairman of Dish Network in a release earlier this month.