Japanese Carrier SoftBank Close to Acquiring Sprint?

The Verge reports on an article from Japanese business newspaper Nikkei claiming that the country's third largest carrier, SoftBank, is close to acquiring U.S. carrier and iPhone partner Sprint Nextel. The report indicates that SoftBank is looking to acquire at least a two-thirds share of Sprint in a deal that would exceed ¥1.5 trillion ($19.2 billion).

softbank logo
The Wall Street Journal follows up with its own claims along the same lines, although it pegs the purchase price at over ¥1 trillion ($12.81 billion).

Sprint executives have said they want to participate in the industry's consolidation. The approach from Softbank comes as Sprint is making progress stitching together its various network technologies and stemming declines in its revenue and subscriber base following a 2005 merger with Nextel.

The deal would mark a massive gamble by Softbank, the country's third-largest carrier by subscribers, to expand its business outside of Japan. Softbank Chief Executive Masayoshi Son has made big bets in the past, including acquiring the Japanese arm of Vodafone Group in 2006. It paid for the deal through a leveraged buyout, which vaulted the company in the mobile-phone business.

The U.S. mobile carrier industry has been looking at significant consolidation in recent years, particularly at the top of the market as Verizon and AT&T have jockeyed for the top spot and Sprint and T-Mobile USA have sought to gain ground on the two leaders. Following the failed merger of AT&T and T-Mobile last year, T-Mobile just last week announced that it would merge with MetroPCS, the country's fifth-largest carrier, although Sprint was rumored to also be considering making a bid.

sprint logo
Sprint became the third of the four major U.S. carriers to offer the iPhone upon the release of the iPhone 4S in October 2011, with company executives moving to "bet the company" on the iPhone in committing to purchase more than 30 million iPhones worth $20 billion over the first four years of the partnership. The move has impacted Sprint's financials over the short-term, but the carrier believes that the long-term effects of having the iPhone will be positive.

Top Rated Comments

ck2875 Avatar
111 months ago
...and SoftBank says, "What's this 'truly unlimited' mumbo jumbo?"
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
zorinlynx Avatar
111 months ago
And thus continues the selling out of our nation to foreign countries.

Not happy to see this. Soon the rest of the world will own us, if not already.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
SgtPepper12 Avatar
111 months ago
Well, the colors match.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
STiNG Operation Avatar
111 months ago
だからスプリントは改善するかもしれない??数年で、私はそのためにダウンしているだろう...
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
a0me Avatar
111 months ago
だからスプリントは改善するかもしれない??数年で、私はそのためにダウンしているだろう...
FYI Google Translate is awful for Japanese translation.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
VenusianSky Avatar
111 months ago
And thus continues the selling out of our nation to foreign countries.

Not happy to see this. Soon the rest of the world will own us, if not already.

Yeah, because no American company has ever purchased their way into a foreign market...

Ever since the bomb, Japan and the US are so tied together that this sort of thing no longer really matters. Both countries are leading innovators with technology. It's like two people getting into a fight and then becoming best friends after...well, if you take the bomb part out of the story.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

april 2021 event coverage feature

Apple Event Live Coverage: New iPads, AirTags, and More Expected [Event Over]

Tuesday April 20, 2021 9:07 am PDT by
Apple's virtual "Spring Loaded" event kicks off today at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time, with Apple expected to debut updated iPad models and perhaps some other hardware such as AirTags or iMac models based on Apple silicon. Apple is providing a live video stream on its website, on YouTube, and in the company's TV app across its platforms. We will also be updating this article with live blog...
m1 imac colors

Apple Announces Redesigned iMac With M1 Chip and Seven Color Options

Tuesday April 20, 2021 10:22 am PDT by
Apple has announced a new, redesigned 24-inch iMac, featuring an M1 chip, a 4.5K display, and a range of color options, as well as an improved cooling system, front-facing camera, speaker system, microphones, power connector, and peripherals. The new iMac features a completely new compact design, and comes in a range of seven striking colors, including green, yellow, orange, pink, purple,...
iphone 12 preorder purple

Apple Launching iPhone 12 and 12 Mini in New Purple Color on April 30

Tuesday April 20, 2021 10:08 am PDT by
Apple today announced that the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini will be available in a new purple color starting April 30, with pre-orders starting this Friday. Apple is also releasing a new MagSafe Leather Case and Leather Sleeve in Deep Violet, a Silicone Case in Capri Blue, Pistachio, Cantaloupe, or Amethyst, and a Leather Wallet in Arizona, all available to order beginning today. iPhone...
14

Apple Says iOS 14.5 Will Be Released 'Next Week'

Tuesday April 20, 2021 11:08 am PDT by
Apple today in a press release about its new AirTag item tracker announced that iOS 14.5 and iPadOS 14.5 will be available starting "next week." iOS 14.5 and iPadOS 14.5 are packed with new features, including the ability for iPhone users who are wearing an Apple Watch to unlock the iPhone with Face ID while wearing a mask. iOS 14.5 and iPadOS 14.5 will also be the minimum software versions...
ipad pro with m1 chip

Apple Introduces Next-Generation iPad Pro With M1 Chip, Thunderbolt, 5G, XDR Display, and More

Tuesday April 20, 2021 10:40 am PDT by
Apple today announced the next-generation iPad Pro with the same M1 chip found in the latest Macs, Thunderbolt and USB4 support, 5G connectivity on cellular models with mmWave support in the United States, and more. With an 8-core CPU and 8-core GPU, Apple says the M1 chip in the new iPad Pro provides up to 50% faster performance and up to 40% faster graphics compared to the A12Z Bionic chip ...
f1618938547

Apple Announces AirTag Tracking Devices Starting At $29 Each

Tuesday April 20, 2021 10:10 am PDT by
Apple today announced AirTag, a Tile-like Bluetooth tracking device that's designed to be attached to items like keys and wallets for tracking purposes, letting you find them right in the Find My app. AirTags are accessories for attaching to backpacks, luggage, and other items. Any U1 device like the iPhone 12 can be used for precision finding to guide you right to the item you're looking...
Ports 2021 MacBook Pro Mockup Feature 1 copy

Stolen MacBook Pro Schematics Confirm Apple's Plans to Add More Ports and Remove Touch Bar

Wednesday April 21, 2021 10:31 am PDT by
Schematics stolen from Apple supplier Quanta Computer outline Apple's plans for the next-generation MacBook Pro models that are expected in 2021, and clearly confirm plans for additional ports and a return to MagSafe. MacRumors saw the schematics after they were leaked online, and some of them feature the logic board of the next-generation MacBook Pro. On the right side of the machine,...
iPad Pro

New 12.9-Inch iPad Pro Will Be 0.5mm Thicker to Accommodate Mini-LED Display

Monday April 19, 2021 11:30 am PDT by
The upcoming 12.9-inch iPad Pro will be thicker than the previous-generation version, likely due to the inclusion of the mini-LED display. We've heard several rumors about the change in thickness, and now leaked design images have confirmed it. A source that designs accessories for Apple devices sent MacRumors a series of photos that feature exact dimensions for the new iPad Pro models, and...
iPad Pro Feature Orange

Wedbush Analysts Say 'Spring Loaded' Event Will Debut New iPads With 'Modest Price Increase,' Along With 'a Few Surprises'

Monday April 19, 2021 6:37 am PDT by
Apple is planning to launch a new entry-level iPad, iPad mini, and iPad Pro at its "Spring Loaded" event tomorrow, along with "a few surprises," according to Wedbush analysts. In a new note to investors, seen by MacRumors, Wedbush analysts Daniel Ives and Strecker Backe explained that the iPad will be the main focus of Apple's "Spring Loaded" event, with new entry-level iPad, iPad mini, and ...
maxresdefault

Apple Event 2021: Everything Apple Announced at Its 'Spring Loaded' Event in Just 6 Minutes

Tuesday April 20, 2021 4:23 pm PDT by
Apple today held its first event of 2021, and it was one of the most exciting events that we've seen in some time. Apple announced a whole slew of new products, including an M1 iMac, an M1 iPad Pro, a refreshed 4K Apple TV, and the long-awaited AirTags. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. It took Apple an hour to introduce all of the new devices during its virtual...