CHICAGO – Nov. 7, 2012 – United States Cellular Corporation (NYSE: USM) today announced strategic actions designed to increase focus on markets where it has strong positions and streamline operations to increase overall efficiency and effectiveness.
U.S. Cellular has reached a definitive agreement to sell its Chicago, St. Louis, central Illinois and three other Midwest markets (the “Transaction Markets”) to subsidiaries of Sprint Nextel Corporation (NYSE: S) for $480 million. The sale includes PCS spectrum and approximately 585,000 customers, or about 10 percent of U.S. Cellular’s total customer base.
The company also announced that it will transition its Bolingbrook Customer Care Center operations to an existing vendor partner, effective Jan. 1, 2013. “In the dynamic wireless marketplace, we have a clear strategy to accelerate profitable growth and increase return on investment over the long term, and we are taking decisive steps to achieve it,” said Mary N. Dillon, U.S. Cellular president and CEO. “Exiting these markets enables us to play to our strengths in markets where we have higher penetration and where we can effectively sharpen our proven strategy to differentiate the U.S. Cellular customer experience from other wireless carriers. Going forward, we will continue to serve more than 5.2 million customers with the unparalleled experience they expect from U.S. Cellular.”