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T-Mobile: Leaders have spent nearly $200K at Trump’s hotel since Sprint merger news

Sprint and T-Mobile have reached an agreement to merge

Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure and T-Mobile CEO John Legere announce that the two companies have reached an agreement to come together to form a new company - one that will deliver the first 5G nationwide network.
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Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure and T-Mobile CEO John Legere announce that the two companies have reached an agreement to come together to form a new company - one that will deliver the first 5G nationwide network.

T-Mobile has, for the first time, reported how much money it has spent at President Trump’s hotel in Washington, D.C., since news of its merger with Sprint broke last April.

In a story published Tuesday by The Washington Post, a letter from T-Mobile said the company has spent about $195,000 on “meeting space, catering, business center services, audio/visual equipment rental [and] lodging” at Trump International Hotel near the White House. The costs were incurred by T-Mobile employees, including CEO John Legere and his leadership team.

The Feb. 21 letter from Anthony Russo, T-Mobile USA’s vice president of federal legislative affairs, was in response to a Feb. 6 letter from Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.). The legislators wanted to know how much money was spent at Trump’s hotel between April 2018 and now.

Russo’s letter went on to say the nearly $200,000 “represents approximately 14 percent of the $1.4 million T-Mobile incurred at hotels in Washington, D.C. during the same period for travel.”

Tuesday’s story follows a January report by The Washington Post about T-Mobile’s expenditure at Trump’s Washington hotel since the merger announcement.

At the time, T-Mobile said its executives stay “at a variety of hotels in DC and across the country — and they are chosen primarily based on proximity to the meetings being conducted.”

Legere also told The Post then that he doubted the company’s use of the hotel would have any influence on the Trump Administration’s inclination toward the proposed merger, or that Trump even knew they were staying there.

The $26 billion merger of Overland Park-based Sprint and T-Mobile is still awaiting federal approval. The companies have pitched the merger to the public and to regulators as a job creator, and touted how it would lower prices for consumers and allow the new company to build a 5G wireless network unrivaled worldwide.

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Kathy Lu is an enterprise editor at The Star, where she oversees reporters who cover a range of topics, from immigration to business. She was previously the features editor at The Roanoke Times in Virginia and since moving here, has learned the difference between Carolina and KC barbecue.
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