Japanese mobile carrier Softbank is reportedly in talks to buy Sprint Nextel Corp. On Thursday, a report from Bloomberg noted that Softbank was looking to purchase two-thirds of the Sprint Nextel company which would give them control of the company. The transaction will cost Softbank a hefty $19 billion, or 1.5 trillion yen and will allow them to enter the U.S market and pick up more customers.
With Sprint under the wing of Softbank, the Japanese carrier will be able to enter the US as the third major carrier and compete with the other big carriers such as Verizon and AT&T. Both Sprint and Softbank use Ericsson AB equipment from Sweden for their wireless, allowing for easy compatibility for the two companies. Under the new ownership, Sprint will gain some breathing room, after investing nearly $20 billion in iPhones from Apple.
The company also launched the first 4G smartphone but on WiMax technology, as opposed to 4G LTE which is the new standard now. Sprint has since begun to build its 4G LTE network and under Softbank would be able to sucessfully transition and free up some of the pressue of betting on Apple’s iPhone to essentially carry the company. Softbank has yet to comment on when they are planning to take over Sprint and how they will make the transition.