T-Mobile struck a $26 billion deal to buy Sprint—a combination that, if allowed by antitrust enforcers, would leave the U.S. wireless market dominated by three national players.
The Journal reported earlier this month that the rivals had rekindled merger discussions, after two failed attempts to combine in the past four years.
The last one collapsed in November in part over the reluctance of SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son to give up control of Sprint, which his company took over for $22 billion in 2013. A sale to T-Mobile would accelerate the Japanese billionaire’s turn away from what was once his core business, selling mobile-phone service.
In other deals news, Marathon Petroleum, the second-largest refiner in the U.S., plans to buy pipeline and refining company Andeavor for more than $20 billion. And Walmart is to merge its British arm, Asda Group, with rival J Sainsbury, creating the U.K.’s largest grocer.