T-Mobile Center takes over Sprint venue in K.C.

The erasure of the Sprint brand continues, as T-Mobile announced the former Sprint Center in Kansas City will become the T-Mobile Center.

In its news release, T-Mobile notes that the venue has been a staple in Kansas City since 2007 and now it’s going to serve up “awesome events” as the T-Mobile Center through 2032.

T-Mobile, with headquarters in Bellevue, Washington, considers Kansas City as its second headquarters. Sprint for a long time had been one of the biggest employers in the area.

“I couldn’t be prouder to announce T-Mobile Center and show the Kansas City community that we’re deeply invested in the home of our second headquarters! We’re proud to be with you, and when it’s safe to re-open, we’re bringing you some incredible Un-carrier experiences,” said T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert in a statement. “Kansas City has a rich culture, known for live entertainment, sports, a thriving arts scene and my personal favorite, Kansas City BBQ, and we are honored to help bring it all to life in T-Mobile Center well into the next decade! Get ready for a good time!”

T-Mobile said Kansas City locals can expect to see T-Mobile Center come to life over the next few months, with initial signage updates expected to go up in August. T-Mobile hasn’t given an exact date, but some reports have pegged the broad switch from the Sprint brand to T-Mobile as August 2, when they officially become unified as one brand.

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The announcement about the new T-Mobile Center comes a few weeks after The Kansas City Star reported that T-Mobile was cutting 241 positions at the former headquarters of Sprint in Overland Park, Kansas.  

T-Mobile’s job moves have raised the ire of merger opponents, including the Communications Workers of America (CWA) union, which has accused T-Mobile of back-pedaling on its promises. That was sparked in part by a petition T-Mobile filed with the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) last month saying the requirement to add 1,000 new employees in California is inconsistent with the CPUC’s regulatory authority and it’s burdensome, especially in light of the economic disruption created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

T-Mobile insisted that its commitment to the CPUC hasn’t changed, in that in three years the total number of T-Mobile employees in California will be at least as many as the combined total of Sprint and T-Mobile employees in the state at the time the merger closed on April 1.

"Our jobs commitment has not changed. We continue to stand by that commitment, as well as our separate commitments to offer jobs to all T-Mobile and Sprint retail employees in good standing at closing with T-Mobile and to open a new Customer Experience Center in the state,” T-Mobile said in a statement at the time. 

About two months ago, T-Mobile announced it will be hiring for more than 5,000 jobs over the next year across the country. That initiative includes jobs in the areas of retail, customer care, T-Mobile for Business, product and technology organizations and others. A T-Mobile spokesperson today confirmed that plans for that initiative have not changed.