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Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

March 8, 2011 at 9:43 AM

T-Mobile USA may merge with Sprint and Clearwire, report says

Bellevue-based T-Mobile USA could be merged with Sprint under a deal being discussed with T-Mobile’s parent company, Deutsche Telekom, according to a new report.

Kirkland-based Clearwire, which is partly owned by Sprint and has been flirting with T-Mobile, could also be rolled into the company, the report said.

The deal would “create a substantial counterweight” to AT&T and Verizon Wireless, according to the report in the Wall Street Journal, which cites unnamed sources:

“But the people characterized the talks as preliminary and said there are a number of hurdles that make a quick deal unlikely. Those hurdles include valuing T-Mobile USA, determining ownership and leadership of a combined company, and figuring out how a transaction might be financed, these people said.”

Among the sticking points: Sprint wants to own more than half of the combined company so its current board chooses the leadership, likely meaning Sprint Chief Executive Dan Hesse, the report said.

Sprint and DT stock are up around 4 percent today and Clearwire’s up about 1 percent at last check.

I wonder if Hesse would move back to the Seattle area and run the Sprintmowire from here, or the headquarters of all three companies would be combined in Overland Park, Kan.

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