MetroPCS Communications, Inc. (NYSE: PCS) has traded well off of its highs since word first surfaced that Deutsche Telekom’s T-Mobile USA was likely to acquire it. Shares hit a high of $14.51 on October 2 and the shares have been trying to hold on to what was $13 and ultimately $12 for stock handles. Now we have shares down over 6% at $11.72 so far this Wednesday.
At issue is not the price nor the cash and stock terms of the T-Mobile buyout deal. What is a constant wild card here is whether or not Spring Nextel Corporation (NYSE: S) is really going to resurface with a rival bid or not. Dan Hesse was originally blocked early this year by his own board of directors from trying to leverage up to acquire MetroPCS.
Reports have been out in recent days that a rival merger deal was going to come from Sprint and then that a rival bid was not likely. So far the verdict is hanging on the Bloomberg report that Sprint was likely to hold off for now. We have said over and over that we would be calling out Sprint’s board if they did make a counter-offer because shares of MetroPCS have more than doubled since the lows of the summer.
Currently we have Sprint shares up only 0.7% at $4.99 on the day.
We have also said that the real merger that will create the strongest company in the pre-pair and no-contract cellular space is for Leap Wireless International (NASDAQ: LEAP) to try to rekindle that old failed merger with MetroPCS. That merger would offer the largest prepaid base and the most equity upside for shareholders if the deal was a stock-for-stock swap.
The beat goes on.
JON C. OGG