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What just happened? Dish Network is acquiring its second mobile virtual network operator in as many years. The satellite television and wireless service provider on Monday announced plans to purchase North Carolina-based Republic Wireless for an undisclosed sum. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2021, pending customary regulatory approval.
Once the deal is finalized, Dish will assume roughly 200,000 customer relationships, the Republic Wireless brand and other related assets. Customers shouldn’t notice any major changes during the ownership transition, Dish said, and there is no need for them to take any action.
The acquisition is the second major get for Dish in less than a year. Last summer, the company completed its $1.4 billion purchase of Boost Mobile from T-Mobile. As part of its agreement to buy Sprint, T-Mobile agreed to divest itself of the Boost Mobile pre-paid brand, paving the way for Dish to become the nation’s new fourth major wireless carrier.
In August 2020, Dish added another piece to its puzzle by purchasing Ting Mobile from Tucows.
When the deal closes, Dish senior VP of Ting Mobile and MVNO platforms, Rob Currie, will lead Republic Wireless. The company's existing Relay division, which caters to frontline teams in hospitality, manufacturing, facilities management, education and healthcare, will also continue to operate as a standalone company and will become a wholesale customers on Dish's 5G network, we're told.