Report: Sprint reaches deal with Japan's Softbank
Japanese mobile phone company Softbank is agreeing to buy 70 percent of Sprint Nextel Corp. for $20 billion, according to a news report.
The deal is expected to be announced Monday, according to CNBC's web site, which cited anonymous sources "close to the situation."
The transaction could make Sprint, the third-largest U.S. mobile phone company, a tougher competitor against its bigger rivals, Verizon Wireless and AT&T. Sprint has 56 million subscribers, about half the amount of Verizon Wireless, the leading provider.
Softbank will buy $8 billion in shares from Sprint and another $12 billion from current Sprint shareholders, the CNBC report said.
John Taylor, a spokesman for Sprint, declined to comment beyond the company's statement last week confirming that it was in talks with Softbank.
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)