The potential difficulty of getting a T-Mobile acquisition past U.S. regulators has led Sprint to abandon its plans to acquire the fourth-largest carrier. The buy was going to help Sprint better compete with AT&T and Verizon, but antitrust issues appeared too daunting for Sprint to continue to pursue the acquisition.

Besides abandoning the T-Mobile acquisition, Sprint also named a new president and CEO today. Marcelo Claure will replace Dan Hesse as the top exec at Sprint.

“Marcelo is a successful entrepreneur who transformed a start-up into a global telecommunications company. He has the management experience, passion and drive to create the strongest network and offer the best products and services in the wireless industry,” said Sprint Chairman Masayoshi Son in a statement. “While we continue to believe industry consolidation will enhance competitiveness and benefit customers, our focus moving forward will be on making Sprint the most successful carrier.”

That “start-up” was Brightstar. Claure founded Brightstar back in 1997 and turned the company into a global powerhouse worth $10.5 billion. Sprint wants that experience as it looks to close the gap with AT&T and Verizon.

Today’s naming of a new CEO ends Hesse’s tenure dating back to 2007. He helped lead the company through a series of major acquisitions including the merger with SoftBank.

The news of the dead merger between Sprint and T-Mobile has led to sharp selloffs in both company’s stock. Sprint shares are down more than 17% right now, while T-Mobile falls nearly 8%.


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