UPDATE Now Colorado has dropped out a multi-state lawsuit that seeks to block the merger of T-Mobile and Sprint. The Colorado Attorney General’s Office announced its decision on Monday after T-Mobile promised that the state would be one of the first in the nation to receive 5G services and Dish pledged to make Colorado the home of its new wireless headquarters.
The companies agree to pay up to a total of $100 million if they fail to meet these commitments.
Dish already houses its call center employees in Littleton, CO, and expects to add some 2,000 full-time employees over the next three years. It agreed to keep its wireless headquarters there for seven years. Also, T-Mobile will significantly build out a statewide 5G network, particularly in rural areas, under agreements the Colorado Attorney General’s office announced Monday.
In June, Colorado originally joined 17 other states and the District of Columbia in a lawsuit to block the T-Mobile and Sprint merger. Now, Colorado joins Mississippi in making its own deals with T-Mobile and Dish, and drops out of the state AG suit. The change leaves 15 states and the District of Columbia still fighting the merger; a court date is set for December 9 in federal court.
“The agreements we are announcing today address the concerns” the state had with the proposed merger “by guaranteeing jobs in Colorado, a statewide buildout of a fast 5G network that will especially benefit rural communities, and low-cost mobile plans,” said Chief Deputy Attorney General Natalie Hanlon Leh. “Our announcement ensures Coloradans will benefit from Dish’s success as a nationwide wireless competitor.”
The U.S. Justice Department recently approved the $26.5 billion merger, in which Dish agreed to acquire the companies’ prepaid businesses and get access to T-Mobile’s network for $5 billion, making it the fourth largest nationwide wireless carrier. Last week, the FCC formally okayed the deal as well.
October 22, 2019
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