FCC Letter Pausing the T-Mobile-Sprint Transaction Clock

On Sept 11, T-Mobile/Sprint Transaction Task Force Director David B. Lawrence, and Federal Communications Commission Wireless Telecommunications Bureau Chief Donald Stockdale sent a letter to T-Mobile and Sprint, saying the following:

Sept 11 we are pausing the FCC's informal 180-day transaction shot clock in [the T-Mobile/Sprint] proceeding. Additional time is necessary to allow for thorough staff and third-party review of newly-submitted and anticipated modeling relied on by the Applicants.

Each of three separate developments require more time. First, on Sept 5, 2018, the Applicants submitted a substantially revised network engineering model. Although the Applicants had previously provided a network engineering model as backup for certain network claims, you explained that since that time "the model has been extended,'' and that the newly-provided model "completes" the prior work. Moreover, the Applicants asserted that this is now the "engineering model on which they rely in support of this transaction." Further, in an Aug 29, 2018 ex parte meeting, T-Mobile executives described T-Mobile's reliance on a business model, titled "Build 9,'' which apparently provides the financial basis for the projected new network buildout. The Commission did not receive Build 9, and third parties did not have access to it, until Sept 5. Build 9 therefore requires further review. Finally, T-Mobile recently disclosed that it intends to submit additional economic modeling in support of the Applications, beyond that strictly responsive to the various economic analyses in the Petitions to Deny.

The clock will remain stopped until the Applicants have completed the record on which they intend to rely and a reasonable period of time has passed for staff and third-party review. The Commission will decide whether to extend the deadline for reply comments after receiving the remainder of the Applicants' modeling submissions.

FCC Letter Pausing the T-Mobile-Sprint Transaction Clock FCC says it needs more time to review Sprint-T-Mobile deal (CNBC)