T-Mobile has hired a high-profile telecommunications executive to oversee its planned merger with Sprint.
Sunit Patel, most recently the chief financial officer and executive vice president at CenturyLink, will take on the role. His title at T-Mobile is executive vice president and merger and integration lead.
“I’ve known Sunit for many years and he’s going to be a fantastic addition to this talented management team,” T-Mobile CEO John Legere said in a statement. “He is smart, savvy, full of big ideas and ready to hit the ground running.”
Patel spent 14 years as the CFO and EVP of Level 3 Communications and took on the same role at CenturyLink after the companies merged in 2017. He also spent time as the CFO of telecommunications company Looking Glass Networks.
He joins T-Mobile as the company wades through ongoing regulatory reviews of the planned merger. Earlier this month, the Federal Communications Commision announced it would pause the informal 180-day shot clock on its deliberations over the merger as it requested and sorted through a large number of documents from the two companies.
In April, T-Mobile and Sprint agreed to merge and create a $146 billion company called simply T-Mobile. Under the terms of the initial agreement, Legere would remain chief executive of the combined company and its primary headquarters would be in T-Mobile’s hometown of Bellevue, Wash.
In June, the two companies began pleading their case to the FCC, which will have to sign off on the merger for it to go through. In their joint Public Interest Statement, T-Mobile and Sprint claimed that the merger would increase competitiveness in the wireless landscape, allowing the combined company to take on incumbents Verizon and ATT. They also claimed the merger was integral for the U.S. to remain competitive in 5G, the next generation of super-fast wireless technology.