The Ryan Reynolds-backed Mint Mobile will be bought by T-Mobile, the company announced Wednesday. The acquisition is part of the cellphone carrier’s plan to buy Ka’ena Corporation, which includes Ultra Mobile and Plum, for up to $1.35 billion.
The “Deadpool” star appeared in a video posted to social media with T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert, who welcomed Reynolds to the T-Mobile family — and touted Mint’s commitment to low prices.
Reynolds will continue in his creative role as a spokesman for Mint. The actor-entrepreneur owns a roughly 25% stake in Mint, according to Bloomberg, which previously reported on the company’s deal talks with T-Mobile.
“Mint Mobile is the best deal in wireless and today’s news only enhances our ability to deliver for our customers,” Reynolds said in a statement. “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. I am so proud of the entire Mint team and so excited for what’s to come.”
T-Mobile said it will maintain Mint Mobile’s current pricing plans, which start at $15 per month for unlimited talk and text and up to 4 GB of data/month.
T-Mobile will pay up to a maximum of $1.35 billion in a combination of 39% cash and 61% stock to acquire Ka’ena. The actual price to be paid by T-Mobile will be based on Ka’ena’s performance during certain periods before and after the closing and is also subject to working capital adjustments and other contractual reserves, the carrier said. T-Mobile said it does not currently expect the transaction to have any impact on the company’s 2023 financial guidance or its ongoing stock repurchase program.
“Mint has built an incredibly successful digital direct-to-consumer business that continues to deliver for customers on the Un-carrier’s leading 5G network and now we are excited to use our scale and owners’ economics to help supercharge it — and Ultra Mobile — into the future,” T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert said in announcing the deal.
Mint Mobile is just one of the many companies under Reynolds’ portfolio. In 2020, Diageo acquired his alcohol company Aviation Gin—in which he had an “unspecified minority stake,”—for $335 million upfront, and an additional $275 million, depending on the company’s performance through the next 10 years. Diageo said Reynolds and co-owner Davos Brands would keep “an ongoing ownership interest” in the company. He also runs the creative agency Maximum Effort. In 2021, Reynolds and Always Sunny in Philadelphia creator Rob McElhenney purchased a football club, Wrexham AFC, for a reported $2.5 million. That year, his wife Blake Lively launched her drink line Betty Buzz in partnership with Maximum Effort.
“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 added.
Perhaps the single largest contributor to that marketing effort has been Reynolds, the Deadpool star, who’s appeared in commercials for the company standing in front of a mint-green background and delivering playful sales pitches.
“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 joked.
In a video announcing the purchase, Sievert said T-Mobile would continue Mint’s $15 per month pricing.
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