SoftBank will pick up 57 percent stake in mobile phone distributor Brightstar for $1.26 billion.
After the deal SoftBank, the 80 percent owner of No. 3 U.S. mobile operator Sprint, said Brightstar would become the exclusive provider of handsets to some SoftBank affiliates.
As part of the transaction, the Buying & Innovation Group, BIG, a joint venture created to realize savings and efficiencies for SoftBank, Sprint, and Brightstar, will become a division of Brightstar.
Brightstar, leveraging certain SoftBank telecommunications affiliates, will buy over $20 billion in handsets, accessories, and services making it one of the leading buyers of mobile devices and accessories in the world.
“Brightstar has been a model of innovation, transforming from a regional wireless distributor into the world’s leading provider of services to the wireless industry and we are excited about what that will mean for the SoftBank Group,” said Masayoshi Son, chairman, and CEO of SoftBank Group.
Brightstar has presence in over 50 countries, reaching more than 90,000 points of sale worldwide, more than 200 mobile network operators, 40,000 retailers, and 15,000 enterprises. It earned revenues in excess of $7 billion and EBITDA of approximately $260 million for the 12 months ending June 2013.