Softbank was notified yesterday by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. that it has completed its investigation of the proposed transaction and found no unresolved national-security issues, according to a statement today. The deal is expected to close July 1, Softbank said.
Dish Network Corp. (DISH), which has made a $25.5 billion counteroffer for Sprint, has said allowing SoftBank to control a U.S. phone network would compromise national security. SoftBank uses some network gear made by Chinese manufacturers, and Sprint’s joint-venture partner Clearwire Corp. (CLWR) has Huawei Technologies Co. equipment in part of its network. Both carriers have said they plan to discontinue purchases and dismantle network equipment provided by Chinese companies.
“It’s positive for SoftBank’s share price as Dish has criticized this,” said Naoki Fujiwara, chief fund manager at Shinkin Asset Management Co. which oversees the equivalent of $4.8 billion. “One political barrier is cleared and it’s a plus for SoftBank.”