GTCR agreed to acquire Consumer Cellular, which provides postpaid wireless services focusing on the 50+ demographic. GTCR is partnering on the deal with Ed Evans, who will become the chief executive of the company once the deal closes. Evans succeeds Consumer Cellular founder John Marick, who has been the company’s CEO since inception.
GTCR, a leading private equity firm, announced today that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Consumer Cellular, Inc. (“Consumer Cellular” or the “Company”).
Headquartered in Portland, Oregon, Consumer Cellular is a leading provider of postpaid wireless services with a focus on the 50+ demographic. The Company currently serves approximately 4 million subscribers nationwide providing affordable cellular plans and award-winning customer service.
In executing the Leaders StrategyTM, GTCR is partnering with Ed Evans. Mr. Evans will become the new CEO of Consumer Cellular upon the close of GTCR’s investment. Mr. Evans is an accomplished executive in the wireless space with more than three decades of experience including partnering with GTCR in its prior investment in Syniverse Technologies. Mr. Evans succeeds Consumer Cellular founder John Marick who has served as the Company’s CEO since inception. Mr. Marick will remain a substantial shareholder of the Company and remain on the board of directors.
“John and the Consumer Cellular team have built a tremendous business that is well-positioned for long-term success,” said GTCR Managing Director David Donnini. “The entire Consumer Cellular organization should be proud of the business they have built. We look forward to Ed working with the Company and its employees to continue Consumer Cellular’s legacy of growth and innovation.”
“I am excited to partner again with GTCR and look forward to continuing Consumer Cellular’s mission of providing its customers with exceptional service and competitively priced wireless plans,” said Mr. Evans. “GTCR brings significant resources and experience in building industry-leading companies and together we expect to further grow Consumer Cellular’s subscriber base and expand its services offering.”
Stephen Jeschke, Managing Director at GTCR, added: “Through their exceptional service and strong customer value proposition, Consumer Cellular delivers a differentiated customer experience at a lower cost to a growing demographic. We are thrilled to be partnering with Consumer Cellular at this exciting time in the Company’s evolution.”
The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Credit Suisse and Raymond James served as financial advisors and Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as legal advisor to GTCR. BofA Securities served as exclusive financial advisor and Kell, Alterman & Runstein, LLP served as legal advisor to Consumer Cellular.
Founded in 1980, GTCR is a leading private equity firm focused on investing in growth companies in the Financial Services & Technology, Healthcare, Technology, Media & Telecommunications and Growth Business Services industries. The Chicago-based firm pioneered The Leaders Strategy™ – finding and partnering with management leaders in core domains to identify, acquire and build market-leading companies through transformational acquisitions and organic growth. Since its inception, GTCR has invested more than $18 billion in over 200 companies. For more information, please visit www.gtcr.com.
About Consumer Cellular
Consumer Cellular is a top-rated wireless carrier that provides no-contract cell phones and service plans primarily to those 50+. The company has been an approved AARP Provider for over 12 years and offers AARP members special discounts on service. Founded 25 years ago on the belief that everyone should have affordable access to the safety and convenience of cellular service, Consumer Cellular is privately held with 2,000 employees. The Portland, Ore.-based company utilizes the nation’s largest voice and data networks, which covers 99 percent of the U.S. population. Consumer Cellular’s wireless phones and plans are sold nationwide at leading retailers such as Target, as well as direct to consumers at ConsumerCellular.com or (888) 345-5509. The company has been ranked on the Inc. 5000 list for 11 years in a row. Consumer Cellular received the highest score in the non-contract value segment of the J.D. Power 2016 (V2) – 2020 (V1) Wireless Non-Contract Customer Care Performance Studies of customers’ satisfaction with wireless customer care experience. For J.D. Power 2020 award information, visit jdpower.com/awards. For cellphone tutorials, features, applications and company news, connect with Consumer Cellular on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.