Sprint to acquire Virgin Mobile USA for $483 million

Sprint, the United States' third largest Tier 1 mobile carrier, will be acquiring mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) Virgin Mobile USA for an estimated total of $483 million.

Sprint already owned 13.1% of Virgin Mobile USA, and the MVNO was the first prepay-only business to lease Sprint's mobile network. After the deal closes, Virgin Mobile USA's CEO Dan Schulman will lead Sprint's prepaid business, which already includes Boost Mobile.

"Prepaid is growing at an unprecedented rate with consumers keenly focused on value," Sprint CEO Dan Hesse said in a statement today. "Virgin Mobile is an iconic brand in the marketplace that will complement our Boost Mobile brand."

The other main controlling parties in Virgin Mobile USA were Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group, which had a 28.3% stake, and South Korea's SK Telecom which got a 15.3% stake in Virgin Mobile USA after Virgin took over its Helio brand last year. Both of these companies shares will be converted into common Sprint stock.

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