The T-Mobile/Radio Shack affair isn’t exactly new news at this point — Radio Shack alleged that T-Mobile “materially breached” the terms of their agreement way back in February. No one short of legal counsel knows exactly what grievances Radio Shack has with their magenta-hued carrier partner beyond lackluster sales performance, but it looks as though things are finally coming to a head anyway.
As of September 14, Radio Shack will discontinue their T-Mobile offerings in over 4,300 US locations and on their website. Then, on the very next day, they intend to roll out the red carpet for Verizon.
Jim Gooch, president and CEO of Radio Shack, seems mighty pleased stating that “the addition of Verizon Wireless, in combination with our existing carrier partners, positions us to now offer the best assortment of carriers, rate plans, devices and accessories for every consumer need.” The implication that T-Mobile hasn’t been a terribly good partner is clear, but Gooch is no stranger to talking smack about T-Mobile. During his tenure as Radio Shack CFO, Gooch said rather candidly that T-Mobile’s product offerings were “not competitive with other carriers” Harsh words, but it’s the last thing Gooch needs to concern himself with if the transition pans out the way he hopes.
Update: T-Mobile has reached out to me with an official response to Radio Shack’s decision, which I’ve included below.
“After careful consideration, we decided that to in order to increase the effectiveness of our retail network and in line with our sales strategy, T-Mobile will exit RadioShack retail locations, effective September 15, 2011. We are currently focused on higher return national retailer opportunities and we expect to announce new channel growth in the coming weeks, which will more than double the number of RadioShack doors currently offering T-Mobile products and services.”