Mint Mobile, partly owned by actor Ryan Reynolds, is being acquired by T-Mobile as part of a cash-and-stock deal worth as much as $1.35 billion.
T-Mobile's purchase of Ka'ena Corp. will give it access the budget wireless provider Mint, along with Ultra Mobile and wholesaler Plum. The brands, which already use T-Mobile for their network, will be run as a separate business unit.
"I never dreamt I'd own a wireless company and I certainly never dreamt I'd sell it to T-Mobile." Reynolds said in a tweet. "Life is strange and I'm incredibly proud and grateful."
The U.S. wireless carrier said Wednesday that it is acquiring the brands' sales, marketing, digital and service operations. It plans to use its supplier relationships and distribution scale to help grow the brands and offer competitive pricing and greater device inventory to more U.S. consumers seeking low cost offerings.
T-Mobile US Inc. said Mint and Ultra Mobile are complementary to its existing prepaid services, Metro by T-Mobile, T-Mobile branded prepaid and Connect by T-Mobile.
T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert said the company plans to give a boost to Mint's already successful digital direct-to-consumer business.
"Over the long-term, we'll also benefit from applying the marketing formula Mint has become famous for across more parts of T-Mobile," Sievert said. "We think customers are really going to win with a more competitive and expansive Mint and Ultra."
Mint founders David Glickman and Rizwan Kassim will stay on at T-Mobile after the transaction is complete to manage the brands. Reynolds, meanwhile, will remain in his creative role for Mint.
The actual price of the deal will depend on Ka'ena Corp.'s performance during certain periods before and after the closing. The transaction is targeted to close later this year.
T-Mobile, based in Bellevue, Washington, became one of the country's largest cellphone service carriers in 2020 after buying rival Sprint.