SoftBank sweetens deal for Sprint, offers $21.6 billion

SoftBank has raised its offer for Sprint in the latest attempt to trump rival firm Dish Network.


SoftBank is offering Sprint shareholders a deal worth $21.6 billion to scupper Dish Network's chances of securing the carrier.

Controlled by CEO Masayoshi Son, the Japanese carrier has raised its previous offer by 7.5 percent, according to Bloomberg.

Under the terms of the deal, SoftBank will pay $16.6 billion to Sprint shareholders and provide $5 billion in capital for a 78 percent stake in the carrier. In a statement, the firm said shares will be valued at $7.65 apiece, rising from the initial offer of $7.30 per share for a 70 percent stake.

Charlie Ergen's Dish Network has offered $25.5 billion, or roughly $7 a share -- consisting of $4.76 in cash and stock representing approximately 32 percent of the company. The firm's CEO called the bid "superior," stating:

"Sprint shareholders will benefit from a higher price with more cash while also creating the opportunity to participate more meaningfully in a combined Dish/Sprint with a significantly-enhanced strategic position and substantial synergies that are not attainable through the pending SoftBank proposal."

However, Sprint says the offer is "not actionable." The carrier has given Dish Network until June 18 to make its "final and best" offer. Dish said it will "analyze the revised SoftBank bid as we consider our strategic options," and the company "continues to believe that Sprint has tremendous value."

A Sprint shareholder meeting will take place on June 25 to vote on SoftBank's proposal.

In addition to the SoftBank-Sprint-Dish fracas, both Sprint and Dish Network have been vying to secure shares in carrier Clearwire. Sprint has proposed a deal worth $3.40 a share to take over the remaining 49 percent of Cleawire the company does not already own, and the rival carrier has tried to entice shareholders with $4.40 a share, valuing the firm at $6.5 billion.

Sprint has claimed that the company's offer for Clearwire falls afoul of Delware law and Clearwire's Equityholders' Agreement, an accusation Dish rejects.