Bellevue, Wash.-based wireless carrier T-Mobile announced Wednesday that it is acquiring Ka’ena Corp., owner of the brands Mint Mobile and Ultra Mobile, in a deal worth up to $1.35 billion.
T-Mobile is acquiring the brands’ sales, marketing, digital, and service operations, and plans to tap into Mint’s marketing expertise to reach new budget-conscious customers.
Mint is backed by actor Ryan Reynolds (“Deadpool”) who often leads those marketing efforts in commercials, some of which have featured his mother. Reynolds, who appeared alongside T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert in a video announcing the acquisition (above), deadpanned in a statement about the deal, and his mom.
“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 said.
Following close of the deal, Mint’s founders David Glickman and Rizwan Kassim will remain onboard at T-Mobile to manage the brands, which will generally operate as a separate business unit. Reynolds will continue on in his creative role on behalf of Mint.
The maximum price of $1.35 billion to acquire Ka’ena is a combination of 39% cash and 61% stock. The deal is expected to close later this year.
T-Mobile reported $61.3 billion in revenue and 1.4 million postpaid net account additions in 2022, both record highs. The company had $4.5 billion in cash and cash equivalents as of Dec. 31.
T-Mobile announced intentions to merge with competitor Sprint in April 2018, and closed that $26.5 billion deal in 2020, concluding a years-long process that included touch-and-go negotiations, regulatory oversight, and lawsuits.