SoftBank Corp.’s $21.6 billion bid for mobile carrier Sprint Nextel Corp. has received the majority support it needs from the last U.S. regulatory body reviewing the transaction, said people familiar with the matter.
Two of three members of the Federal Communications Commission have voted to approve the deal, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter hasn’t been made public.
The deal stands to boost No. 3 Sprint against largest U.S. mobile carriers Verizon Wireless and AT&T Inc. SoftBank, led by its billionaire founder Masayoshi Son, has pledged innovative pricing and network investments.
The FCC’s acting chairwoman, Mignon Clyburn, on June 27 asked fellow commissioners to approve SoftBank’s bid, as well as Sprint’s offer to buy the half of wireless operator Clearwire Corp. it doesn’t already own.
Sprint shareholders approved the deal June 25. Tokyo-based SoftBank will own 78 percent of Sprint, based in Overland Park, Kansas.
The FCC’s review of the SoftBank-Sprint deal was to determine whether the transfer of control of Sprint’s airwaves is in the public’s interest.
The agency typically doesn’t release decisions until all members have voted. Justin Cole, an FCC spokesman, declined to comment.
U.S. antitrust and security officials earlier cleared SoftBank’s bid.
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