Former Sprint dealers filed suit against T-Mobile for running them out of business since the operator finished the merger with Sprint. Four wireless dealers filed the suit stating that the deal caused more harm than good, and that it’s anti-competitive and predatory.
The suit was filed by Absolute Wireless, Maycom, Solutions Center, and Wireless Express have been named in their complaints. The merger deal allegedly caused the dealers to shut down, and either their stores were converted to T-Mobile stores or closed soon after the deal was completed.
According to Absolute Wireless and Solutions Center, T-Mobile only wanted to keep Sprint’s customers on the network, and the deal didn’t include Spring’s dealers. It appears that the deal forced Sprint’s dealers out of business as customers were offered much better and more enticing contracts by T-Mobile (via GSMArena).
Adam Wolf, the President of NWIDA, said that T-Mobile didn’t want to deal with the dealers, and it was fewer dealers. T-Mobile also said that “We don’t comment on pending litigation, but our dealers are an important part of how we serve our customers and we have a strong relationship with them.” in a comment to FierceWireless.
At the start of the T-Mobile and Sprint merger, there were more than 9,000 Sprint and T-Mobile stores, according to Jeff Moore, the principal of Wave7 Research. “The store count is falling and there has been consolidation among dealers,” he said. Today, the number of T-Mobile stores is less than 7,000, according to Moore.
The number of Metro stores was also more than 9,000 at the beginning of the merger, but that number now stands at less than 7,000, and it’s clear that once the deal was completed and the contracts, which were likely signed by Sprint, expired, T-Mobile wanted to take off the pressure and remove many dealers. Sadly, as many pointed out before and during the merger, this was inevitable, and it was one of the reasons why it took so long for the deal to go through.