And just like that, it's a done deal. T-Mobile USA and MetroPCS are going to be one, assuming the governmental approvals go through. Not long after the AT&T / T-Mobile marriage fell apart at the doorsteps of the chapel, it looks like this one's going to stick. Even combined, the two carriers won't jump Sprint, Verizon or AT&T in terms of subscriber count, which should make it easier to push through on the regulatory front. Deutsche Telekom, the parent company of T-Mobile USA, announced that it had signed a definitive agreement to combine the two players, and both companies are looking to transition people off of MetroPCS' CDMA network in a few years. Going forward, the joined companies will retain the T-Mobile name, so you better get you MetroPCS gear while it lasts.
The freed-up spectrum of ditching the CDMA waves will be used to bring more LTE to more people. Looking for financial details? Here it is from the horse's mouth: "The transaction is structured as a recapitalization, in which MetroPCS will declare a 1 for 2 reverse stock split, make a cash payment of $1.5 billion to its shareholders (approximately $4.09 per share prior to the reverse stock split) and acquire all of T-Mobile's capital stock by issuing to Deutsche Telekom 74% of MetroPCS' common stock on a pro forma basis. Deutsche Telekom has also agreed to roll its existing intercompany debt into new $15 billion senior unsecured notes of the combined company, provide the combined company with a $500 million unsecured revolving credit facility and provide a $5.5 billion backstop commitment for certain MetroPCS third-party financing transactions."
It's pretty clear that the merge will make the single remaining company stronger, and hopefully more capable of snagging high-end phones like the iPhone. It remains to be seen how the marriage will work out; T-Mobile focuses mostly on postpaid users, while MetroPCS focuses on prepaid. There's no set completion date, but we're guessing the duo would love to tie the knot prior to 2013. Best wishes, you two!