T-Mobile is set to purchase prepaid wireless brand Mint Mobile but says the brand’s low monthly rate – as well as its marketing from part-owner and actor Ryan Reynolds – are here to stay.
T-Mobile on Wednesday said it agreed to purchase Ka’ena Corp. and its subsidiaries and brands, including Mint Mobile, the wireless service Ultra Mobile and wholesaler Plum. T-Mobile plans to pay up to $1.35 billion in cash and stock and close the deal later this year, with the final price depending on Ka’ena’s performance.
The deal should help brands grow and offer competitive pricing to more US consumers, according to a statement from T-Mobile.
“We think customers are really going to win with a more competitive and expansive Mint and Ultra,” said T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert in a news release.
What is Mint Mobile?
Mint is known for its lighthearted advertisements starring its mascot, a green fox, and Reynolds.
Once the deal closes, Mint founders David Glickman and Rizwan Kassim will remain with T-Mobile to manage the brands, which will operate as a separate business unit. Reynolds will also remain and “continue on in his creative role on behalf of the Mint.”
“We are so happy T-Mobile beat out an aggressive last-minute bid from my mom Tammy Reynolds as we believe the excellence of their 5G network will provide a better strategic fit than my mom’s slightly-above-average mahjong skills,” Reynolds joked in the release.
Unlike T-Mobile, Mint hasn’t been running its own network. Instead, it licenses the ability to use T-Mobile’s coverage for its service.
To use Mint, customers order a SIM card, install the card on a phone and activate it with a smartphone app or Mint’s website. Since Mint relies on T-Mobile’s network, phones that are compatible with the carrier work best.
How much does Mint Mobile cost?
Pricing for a three-month trial period currently starts at $15 per month for unlimited talk and text and up to 4 GB of data per month. In a video posted to Twitter, Sievert said T-Mobile plans to continue Mint’s current pricing.
“Over the long-term, we’ll also benefit from applying the marketing formula Mint has become famous to across more and more parts of T-Mobile,” Sievert said. “We are excited to use our scale and owners’ economies to help supercharge it .”
T-Mobile stock price after announcement
T-Mobile said Mint and Ulta are complementary to their current prepaid service offerings, which include Metro by T-Mobile, T-mobile branded prepaid and Connect by T-Mobile.
The deal will have Mint continue its use of T-Mobile’s 5G network, with the carrier taking over the brand’s sales, marketing, digital and service operations.
“Our brands have thrived on the T-Mobile network, and we are thrilled that this agreement will take them even further, bringing the many benefits of 5G to even more Americans,” said David Glickman, founder and CEO of Mint, Ultra and Plum .
T-Mobile’s stock was trading at $144.12 at 12 pm Eastern, up 0.78% from the day prior.
How much of Mint Mobile does Ryan Reynolds own?
Bloomberg reported that Reynolds owns about 25% of the company.
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