Might Level 3 Buy Sprint’s Long-Distance Network?

**Editor’s Note: Please click here for a recap of the biggest communications mergers in Q2 2014.**

Sprint is said to be interested in selling its long-distance wireline network, and if it happens, it could be to Level 3 Communications.

A new Oppenheimer report says Colorado-based Level 3 is the most likely acquirer of those assets, noted. Sprint, in turn, then might lease them back.

“We see a sale-leaseback of (Sprint’s) long-distance network as likely,” said Oppenheimer analyst Tim Horan in a research report. “We suspect Level 3 would be the most likely partner, and it would be quite accretive to its FCF (free cash flow).”

Level 3 Communications is already in the middle of a huge merger. Its $5.7 billion acquisition of rival tw telecom is expected to close before the end of the year. The deal is expected to create a more significant rival to networks provided by AT&T and Verizon.

Level 3 stock is up a little more than 1 percent on the news Wednesday.

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