Conflicting reports emerged on Friday concerning the price that Deutsche Telekom would be willing to accept for T-Mobile US.
An unnamed source in a report by Bloomberg said that the German incumbent would consider an offer of at least $35 per share. However, another source, this time cited in a report by Reuters, claimed that $35 per share would be too low to tempt Deutsche Telekom to the negotiating table.
Earlier this month, Sprint withdrew an offer for T-Mobile purportedly worth $40 per share due to staunch opposition from competition authorities. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairman Tom Wheeler said at the time the deal's collapse was good for American consumers.
Days earlier, French telco Iliad launched a bid for T-Mobile worth $33 per share, an offer that Deutsche Telekom later rejected for being too low.
T-Mobile US shares traded on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday in the range of $29.43-$31.37.
T-Mobile is pursuing an aggressive challenger strategy that includes cutting prices, scrapping long-term contracts, and doing away with roaming fees. It has also invested heavily in its LTE network. However, Deutsche Telekom believes its U.S. unit lacks the scale to compete long-term with AT&T and Verizon.
Meanwhile, in the wake of Sprint and T-Mobile's failed merger, the rivalry between the two has ratcheted up.
New Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure has revamped the operator's shared data plans and cut the cost of its unlimited contract. T-Mobile has responded by increasing the volume of data available on some tariffs, increasing the number of lines that can be added to shared price plans, and exempting more music streaming services from eating into customers' data allowances.