updated 11:00 am EDT, Thu July 17, 2008
SKT Wants Sprint Stake
SK Telecom isn't interested in a direct takeover of Sprint but is nonetheless interested in gaining a clear stake in the American wireless carrier, according to reports. The Korean company now denies that it has any plans to completely buy out Sprint but is now said by sources of BusinessWeek to be mulling a "major stake" in the cellular provider that would require seats on Sprint's board of directors, handing a significant amount of influence to SK Telecom over larger decisions.
The potential bidder declines to comment on the specific rumor but admits it has been "exploring and seeking opportunities" to give itself a greater role in US business. It recently lost some of its control after Virgin purchased Helio last month, giving up its majority involvement in Helio for about 17 percent in the newly expanded Virgin.
Sprint hasn't commented on the deal but is thought to be investigating these kinds of deals to boost its cash flow and help recover from steady losses that it's only now recovering from with the help of the Samsung Instinct, similar devices, and simplified service plans.