Japan’s Softbank moved forward with its investment in device logistics provider Brightstar, pouring $1.26 billion into the company for a 57% share of the operation. Softbank earlier this week was reported to be in talks regarding the investment in a deal worth north of $1 billion.
Softbank noted that the deal would be financed by cash on hand with plans increase its ownership stake in Brightstar to 70% over the next five years. The deal values the privately-held Brightstar at approximately $2.2 billion.
As part of the transaction, the previously formed Buying & Innovation Group formed by Softbank, Sprint and Brightstar following Softbank’s $21.6 billion purchase of a 78% stake in Sprint would become a division of Brightstar. Brightstar will maintain its headquarters in Miami, with Marcelo Claure maintaining his position as president and CEO of the operations.
Brightstar not surprisingly will also become the exclusive provider of “handsets, accessories and services to certain Softbank” affiliates and also have a “preferential right to provide services including distribution, supply chain, handset insurance, buy-back and trade-in, multi-channel retail and financial services to certain Softbank telecommunications affiliates.”
Both companies said they would leverage Brightstar’s position and the influx of capital to further expand the logistics provider’s presence. Brightstar currently has operations in more than 50 countries, while the combination with Softbank will reach more than 90,000 points of sale worldwide, more than 200 mobile operators, 40,000 retailers and 15,000 enterprises.
Brightstar last week reportedly moved closer to an acquisition of European-based device distributor 20:20 Mobile.
Check out the RCR Wireless News Feature Report looking at the device supply management space: “Device evolution spurs supply management challenges.”
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