T-Mobile and satellite TV service Dish are in talks to join forces, The Wall Street Journal reports citing several anonymous insiders. The decision seems far from final, though the two companies have apparently already agreed that T-Mobile John Legere would serve as CEO while Dish’s Charlie Ergen would become chairman.
The specifics of the deal are still up for debate though. It’s unclear how much Dish would pay for T-Mobile, and how that amount would be split between cash and stock. Overall, talks are still in a “formative stage,” one source told WSJ.
Both companies have unsuccessfully pursued similar mergers in the past. Dish tried to buy Sprint back in 2013, but was beat out by a better offer from Japanese carrier SoftBank. Meanwhile, T-Mobile recently pushed for a merger with Sprint that failed as well under regulatory pressure.
A deal between Dish and T-Mobile probably has a higher chance of succeeding. The two companies don’t really overlap in service, and both still act as underdogs in their respective fields. Dish has been buying up spectrum as quickly as possible, which could help T-Mobile speed up its expansion. The satellite TV firm could also be looking for a quick way into the wireless business, and this may be its best option.