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Altice's pursuit of Charter slows amid T-Mobile/Sprint deal talks: Sources

  • French telecom giant Altice was working on a bid for Charter over the summer as competition heated up, but the urgency to get a bid on the table has diminished, sources tell CNBC.
  • A plan floated a month ago in which SoftBank would combine Charter and Sprint in a new company has been pushed to the background.

Altice's pursuit of Charter Communications has slowed after talks between Sprint and T-Mobile emerged this week, sources told CNBC.

The urgency for Altice to put together a bid has diminished now that it appears Sprint is going in a different direction. On Tuesday, CNBC's David Faber reported that T-Mobile and Sprint are in active talks about a merger, citing people close to the situation.

That means a plan floated more than a month ago in which SoftBank would combine Charter and Sprint in a new company have been pushed aside. Faber said negotiations between T-Mobile and Sprint, which is controlled by SoftBank, are still weeks away from completion and the chances of reaching a deal aren't assured.

French telecom giant Altice, which operates the U.S. cable subsidiary Altice USA, worked on its own bid to buy Charter over the summer when it appeared there was plenty of competition from both the proposal involving SoftBank and earlier interest from Verizon. But that urgency by Altice to get a bid out there has diminished, Faber said Tuesday.

Charter continues to be in Altice's sights, but the company is looking at it from a longer-term perspective, perhaps one to two years down the road.