Sprint, Dish Continue Merger Talks With Waiver From SoftBank


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Sprint Nextel has been in negotiations with SoftBank for a $20 billion merger since last October. However, Dish Network swooped in earlier this month with a $25 billion offer for Sprint, making things much more complicated. Sprint is currently in the process of evaluating each offer, while Dish is adamant that its offer is superior to SoftBank's.

Today, Sprint announced that SoftBank has given the carrier a waiver that allows Sprint to continue its discussions with Dish. The waiver does away with some provisions of the merger agreement between Sprint and SoftBank. It will allow Sprint to enter non-disclosure agreements with Dish for further discussion of its merger proposal. Sprint is still not allowed to disclose non-public information to Dish, and the two companies cannot enter formal negotiations.

Last week, Sprint released its first quarter 2013 financial results. While the carrier's net losses dropped from the fourth quarter of 2012, the carrier's subscriber numbers also dropped by over 500,000 postpaid subscribers. Sprint is currently in the process of shutting down its Nextel platform, which is where many of the subscriber losses originated.