SoftBank is reportedly turning its sights on a possible bid for Vodafone in the face of growing opposition by U.S. regulators to the Japan-based company's desire to merge Sprint with T-Mobile US.
Now that the FCC has set a band plan for the auction of AWS-3 spectrum this fall, a complex bit of game theory is underway to see which spectrum blocks Verizon Wireless, AT&T Mobility, Sprint and T-Mobile US will bid for.
SAN ANTONIO, Texas--SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son issued a call to the small and rural carriers here at the Competitive Carriers Association trade show: "We need to fight back," Son proclaimed during a keynote presentation outlining Sprint's new efforts with the CCA and the NetAmerica Alliance to increase Sprint's LTE footprint.
Next week the Competitive Carriers Association kicks off its annual spring show, this time in San Antonio, Texas, and attendees can expect keynote presentations from SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son and Roger Sherman, the new chief of the FCC's Wireless Telecommunications Bureau. (Sherman is filling in for FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, who was scheduled to keynote the CCA event but instead now has to testify before Congress.) And key topics at the CCA event will include how to ensure smaller carriers can fully participate in the FCC's upcoming spectrum auctions, as well as how LTE roaming will work, whether competitive carriers will be able to offer Voice over LTE technology, and how they can offload data to Wi-Fi networks.
AT&T CFO John Stephens said it would "surprising" for federal regulators to approve a deal for Sprint to merge with T-Mobile US so soon after they quashed AT&T's bid to buy T-Mobile.
We're not in a price war right now, despite multiple competitive changes in pricing plans over the last few months. So if we're not in a price war, what would one actually look like?
WASHINGTON—SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son said he aims to deliver wireless downlink speeds of 200 Mbps and lower prices to U.S. consumers via Sprint to inject more competition in the wired and wireless broadband market. Son made the pitch shortly after saying in an interview that he would like to combine Sprint with T-Mobile US to ignite a "massive price war" in the U.S. market, though he said no firm deal has been struck.
SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son explicitly called for a deal between SoftBank-owned Sprint and T-Mobile US in a TV interview, and said combining the No. 3 and 4 wireless carriers would ignite a "massive price war" and more competition in the U.S. market.
Sprint's management and the wider company is in line with the thinking of its hard-charging chairman, SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son--contrary to a recent report of friction between Son and some Sprint executives, according to Sprint CFO Joe Euteneuer.
SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son will not directly call for a merger between SoftBank-owned Sprint and T-Mobile US in a speech in Washington on Tuesday, according to a Bloomberg report.