Japan's SoftBank Mulling $19 Billion Purchase Of T-Mobile via Stake In Sprint

Those rumors of Sprint buying T-Mobile? At first blush, it was easy to brush it off as nothing more than a passing whisper, but now, evidence is beginning to mount. Japanese telecomunications company SoftBank is reportedly looking to close a deal "soon" that would see it purchasing T-Mobile. While SoftBank's roots are in Japan, it already owns a sizable stake of Sprint in the United States.

SoftBank would then further its grasp on the U.S. market, and if things go to plan, it looks as if SoftBank will pay upwards of $19 billion for the carrier. The process won't be easy. Regulators already spiked the proposed AT&T/T-Mobile merger from a few years ago, and SoftBank will no doubt face a lot of regulatory heat if attempting to acquire the nation's fourth-largest mobile operator.

If the purchase sails through, we'll be down to just three major carriers, but that may open the door for smaller carriers to combat the trifecta on price and service quality.