Sprint Nextel – How Nextel Helped America Get Work Done

Category: Telecom Services
Brand/Client: Sprint Nextel
Primary Agency: Goodby, Silverstein & Partners
Media Agency: Mindshare

STRATEGIC CHALLENGE

From the outside, the merger of Sprint and Nextel in 2005 made perfect strategic sense. Nextel owned the blue/grey-collar workforce, and Sprint, a tier one wireless carrier, wanted to expand its customer base. For $36 billion, Sprint merged with Nextel, the largest network of push-to-talk (PTT) users in the U.S. (around 20 million) on the largest PTT network. Based on a unique technology and backed by a unique PTT network, Nextel had extremely loyal customers who could connect to each other practically instantly at the touch of a button.

However, the Nextel network began to exceed capacity, and service reliability became a problem for the first time in the company's history. The loyal Nextel customers Sprint was counting on to expand its base blamed the merger for ruining their beloved network.