Dish's CEO, Charlie Ergen is reportedly in no rush to finalize the deal with T-Mobile and Sprint to purchase spectrum and Boost Mobile, so that their merger can be approved.
Earlier this week, we heard that Ergen and Dish Network was looking to purchase some spectrum from Sprint as well as Boost Mobile for around $6 billion. This would allow for the Justice Department to approve the merger of T-Mobile and Sprint, as it would create a viable fourth carrier in the US.
Ergen taking his time to get a deal finalized is not new. A source that the NY Post spoke with, stated that Ergen is "a deal guy", and that the "best deal for hime will come when everyone is spent". In other words, Ergen would like to spend less for these assets that Dish is looking to purchase. It makes sense for Ergen and really anyone that is looking to buy something. Getting it cheaper is always a good thing.
According to sources close to Ergen, he is weeks, if not months, from finalizing this deal with T-Mobile and Sprint. Which means that this merger might not be finalized anytime soon.
This is of course going to throw off T-Mobile CEO, John Legere's, plans to get this merger finalized, and approved. If things take too long, parties might start to back out. Seeing as the merger was already announced over a year ago, and it's still not approved by the Justice Department.
Since Ergen is taking his sweet time striking a deal with T-Mobile and Sprint, it could force the DOJ to move to block the merger, which could have a negative affect on Ergen's Dish Network.
Dish already has a ton of spectrum, so this deal would make perfect sense for the company. As it would get even more spectrum to build out its new mobile network. But it would also get a few million subscribers from Boost Mobile, as well as the ability to use the New T-Mobile's network, which would help Dish roll out its network sooner, as it would have the New T-Mobile's network as a backhaul. Which is going to be a big seller for the new Boost Mobile under Dish's ownership.
T-Mobile isn't waiting on Dish Network though, as expected. It is preparing to poach some other potential buyers for Sprint's spectrum assets. As this is going to be the best way to get the DOJ to approve of the deal, it's needed at this point. If Legere can't offload some of this spectrum, the merger is all but certain to be blocked. And when it goes to trial, T-Mobile is going to have a tough time winning. But if it can sell off some of this spectrum that Sprint has, it'll stand a much better chance of being approved.
Ergen might just wait so long that he doesn't get this deal from T-Mobile, which isn't going to be great for Dish. Especially since it does have a ton of spectrum that is going unused right now, and is on the verge of getting fined by the FCC for not building it out.