Sprint announced plans to open more than 60 new stores in New England over the next 18 months as part of its broader strategy to expand its direct-to-consumer retail presence.
The nation’s fourth-largest mobile network operator said the move would create more than 450 jobs throughout Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and upstate New York. The move is aimed at leveraging recent network investments in markets such as Boston; Buffalo, New York; and Providence, Rhode Island.
Sprint said it had upgraded 630 cell sites in New England with the addition of 800 MHz, 2.5 GHz, HD Voice and carrier aggregation.
Sprint CFO Tarek Robbiati said a few months ago that retail had become a top priority as the carrier continues to fight to close the gap with its bigger rivals and trim expenses that accompany deals with third-party retailers.
“Right now we feel we are a little bit over indexed on expensive distribution channels. So, for example, we acquire more customers than we would like to in channels that are expensive, like dealers. Dealers, yes, you pay them a variable commission, but the variable commission has been sized to include recovery of the overheads. If we were to acquire the same amount of customers into our company-owned retail stores, we would be incurring a much lower variable cost of acquisition, or gross adds, or lower cost to bear.”