Report: T-Mobile approached Verizon about buying 700 MHz A Block spectrum

T-Mobile US (NYSE:TMUS) has approached Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) about buying spectrum from Verizon, likely the carrier's 700 MHz A Block airwaves, according to a Reuters report.

The report, citing an unnamed source familiar with the matter, said although T-Mobile has broached the matter with Verizon, the process is still in the early stages. T-Mobile declined to comment, according to Reuters.

Speaking at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference in Barcelona, Verizon Communications CFO Fran Shammo reiterated that Verizon is open to selling the A Block at the right price.

"The A spectrum is out there, and if someone walks up to me with an offer, we will entertain it," he said referring to the 700 MHz A Block. "This is not a fire sale though, so if we don't get the right offer, we'll deploy the spectrum in our own network."

T-Mobile said earlier this week it will sell $2 billion in debt after raising $1.8 billion in a stock sale as part of a plan to build up its war chest to buy spectrum. The carrier said in a regulatory filing for the debt sale that it is "currently considering an acquisition of spectrum from a private party. If we reach agreement to acquire such spectrum, we anticipate that a portion of the net proceeds of this offering will be used to finance such acquisition." T-Mobile used the same language in describing its stock sale earlier this month.

Verizon paid $2.4 billion for its A Block licenses, and T-Mobile would likely need to pay that much if not more, according to analysts. Additionally, T-Mobile is likely eyeing upcoming FCC spectrum auctions, including the incentive auctions of 600 MHz broadcast spectrum, and the auction of the AWS-3 bands, which are compatible with T-Mobile's existing AWS holdings.

For more:
- see this Reuters article
- see this separate Reuters article
- see this Bloomberg article

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