Receive Breaking News updates as they occur
By Soyoung Kim and Leila Abboud PARIS/NEW YORK (Reuters) - French telecommunications company Iliad SA has made a surprise offer for T-Mobile US Inc , setting up a potential bidding war with Sprint Corp , the U.S. mobile carrier now controlled by Japan's Softbank Corp . The market and its relatively healthy margins remain alluring to some foreign operators like Softbank and Iliad, however. Iliad, which has shaken up the French mobile and broadband market in the past decade with its cheap, pared-down subscriber plans, bid $15 billion in cash for 56.6 percent of T-Mobile US at $33 per share, it said in a statement on Thursday. The Paris-based company said its offer for the fourth-largest U.S. carrier values all of T-Mobile at $36.20 per share, a premium of 42 percent over the pre-announcement share price, once expected cost savings of $10 billion were taken into account.