Just in case there were any doubts, T-Mobile US is letting the world know that after about two years of fighting for its merger with Sprint, the coronavirus isn't going to stop it.
While COVID-19 fears have hammered financial markets, T-Mobile announced today that it is financially prepared to close the planned merger with Sprint. It made that statement based on its previously secured commitments for bridge financing and senior credit facility financing—subject, of course, to satisfying customary closing conditions.
The company took the occasion to remind everybody that the deal will put it in the best position to serve the public in times like these, when people need to be connected at an affordable price.
When the merger closes, I know #NewTMobile will be the best positioned to serve the public in times like these. More than ever, people need savings and a network they can really rely on - #NewTMobile will do that & more! Key info:https://t.co/0F3RPlMEo0 https://t.co/qNcb5jedxH— Mike Sievert (@SievertMike) March 19, 2020
Specifically, T-Mobile said it’s been in communication with all 16 banks and has not received any notification that any of them are unprepared to fund their commitments to support the closing of the transaction. T-Mobile and Sprint are moving to close the merger as soon as possible; the company refers to the actual closing as “Day Zero.”
“I’m pleased that right now we have broad support from the banks to finance the closing of this merger - we are very close to unleashing the capabilities of the New T-Mobile, and that is even more important for consumers during the current COVID-19 pandemic,” said John Legere, CEO of T-Mobile, in a statement. “Our nation is more dependent than ever on connectivity, and we will continue to deliver our essential wireless service today and when we merge with Sprint, with a Nationwide 5G service that is broader and more robust than anything else in America. We can see the finish line and are prepared to close the merger very soon so our teams can get to work building a supercharged Un-carrier.”
Legere spelled out his departure plans last year; he’s due to leave at the end of April, when current President and COO Mike Sievert will take on the role of CEO. CFO Braxton Carter is remaining in his position for the time being.
“We are very happy to have assembled sixteen leading U.S. and global banks in our committed bridge financing for the acquisition of Sprint. This diversification of banks, and the spreading of the committed bridge financing creates a very high-quality bridge,” Carter said in a statement today.
“In times when consumers need affordable service plans to stay connected, T-Mobile is fully prepared and well positioned to be the provider to meet these needs,” Sievert stated. “In fact, after we close the merger, the New T-Mobile may be the best positioned company to serve them, as more and more consumers seek value in these uncertain times. We’re here for our community of consumers who count on us.”
It was just a week ago (March 11, to be precise) that California Attorney General Xavier Becerra announced that his office was dropping its legal fight against the merger after reaching a settlement with the company.
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) still needs to vote on it, but it also put out a proposal to approve the merger with conditions, addressing things like coverage in rural areas, not increasing retail prices for at least three years and increasing jobs in the state by at least 1,000.