Satellite-TV provider Dish Network (DISH - Get Report) will pay $5 billion for wireless assets in a deal with T-Mobile US (TMUS - Get Report) and Sprint (S - Get Report) , setting the stage for the U.S. Department of Justice to approve the $26.5 billion merger of the mobile phone carriers.
Citing people familiar with the discussions, Bloomberg News reported on Wednesday that Dish will pay about $1.5 billion for prepaid mobile businesses and roughly $3.5 billion for spectrum. As part of the deal, Dish will not be able sell the assets or hand over control of the agreement to a third party for three years.
T-Mobile and Sprint have agreed to a series of deal concessions to gain regulatory approval for their merger, but they still needs the green light from the DOJ's antitrust chief. The current deal may allow the Justice Department to approve the merger before the end of the month.
The sources said that Dish will be allowed to sell T-Mobile wireless service under the Dish brand for seven years, and T-Mobile will provide operational support for three years as customers shift to Dish.
T-Mobile will announce its second-quarter earnings results on Thursday. Analysts polled by FactSet are expecting earnings of 97 cents a share on revenue of $11.1 billion.
Shares of Dish were down 2.87% at $42.02 in premarket trading on the Nasdaq Stock Market, while shares of Sprint shares were up 4.37% at $7.40. T-Mobile shares were unchanged at $78.14.