T-Mobile closes Mint Mobile deal, promises to keep unique spirit

  • T-Mobile announced it was acquiring Mint just over a year ago 

  • The "un-carrier" committed to a 60-day unlocking period for Mint and Ultra devices 

  • Mint founders David Glickman and Rizwan Kassim are joining T-Mobile 

It’s officially a done deal. T-Mobile US on Wednesday announced the completion of its acquisition of Ka’ena Corporation, which includes Mint Mobile, Ultra Mobile and Plum.

T-Mobile reached a definitive agreement in March 2023 to acquire Mint and its affiliate brands for up to $1.35 billion. It was originally expected to close by the end of 2023, but regulators didn’t give their blessing until last week, when T-Mobile made some handset unlocking commitments.

Of course, the “un-carrier” said the deal is a “win-win” all around – and before you roll your eyes and say “Yes, we’ve heard that before” – know that T-Mobile promises to maintain the unique style and “entrepreneurial spirit” that make Mint and Ultra so special.

Mint pitchman and “Deadpool” star Ryan Reynolds will continue in his creative role on behalf of Mint, and Mint founders David Glickman and Rizwan Kassim are joining T-Mobile to continue to drive the brands.

In a video posted on social media, Reynolds announced a $15/month price commitment for new and existing customers – “because why would we mess with that?” He also said they’re extending a new customer unlimited offer of three months for $15/month through the end of the year. Plus, customers will soon get free roaming to Canada and Scam Screener to flag sketchy calls.

“T-Mobile will make Mint better,” he said. It’s also doing some good for Reynolds’ bottom line. If Reynolds owns about 25% of Mint Mobile as reports suggest, he’s making more than $300 million in cash and stock from the deal, according to estimates calculated by the Wall Street Journal last year.

Mint & Ultra 

The Mint and Ultra brands in particular serve very different channels. Mint Mobile is a direct-to-consumer prepaid brand and Ultra Mobile is an international-focused value brand, noted Wave7 Research principal Jeff Moore.

In a survey of independent prepaid dealers reported by Best MVNO, Wave7 Research found that Ultra Mobile placed No. 1 among their top-selling prepaid brands in Q1 2024. The dealers in the survey run multi-carrier stores, meaning they sell more than one prepaid brand.

In 2020, Metro by T-Mobile dealers were upset when they were told they could sell only Metro by T-Mobile service rather than other brands alongside Metro if they wanted to continue selling the service.

Fierce reached out the T-Mobile to see if there are any similar plans in the offing for Ultra. The answer is no — they will continue to offer other brands. “We have no plans to change Ultra’s ultra-successful model,” the spokesperson said.