NWIDA has learned – and has heard from multiple dealers – that T-Mobile is ending their “TPRS” (T-Mobile Preferred Retailer – Subdealer) program and will close hundreds of dealer-owned stores within the first quarter of 2023. NWIDA has been told by a Master Agent that it’s T-Mobile ending the program, not anyone Master Agent.
Many of these dealers have been around since the Nextel days (if not before) and have owned their own business – and selling wireless – for over 20 years. And now, without any option, they must close their stores and fire their employees.
NWIDA is working with these dealers to explore all options. If your store has been affected by the termination of this program, please contact us.
In some cases, T-Mobile has forced some of these dealers to sell their stores. However, they will approve only one buyer (usually the dealer’s Master Agent), removing any negotiating leverage the dealer may have had. When you can only sell to one entity, you pretty much have to accept their offer – and many of these offers are for pennies on the dollar.
Some aren’t being compensated at all. They are simply being shut down.
T-Mobile told some of these dealers – as recently as within the last year – to extend their store leases – in some cases up to 5 years – and then weeks later informed them they would be terminated, putting them on the hook for a multi-year lease.
In addition, these dealers were forced, by T-Mobile, to spend tens of thousands (and in some cases hundreds of thousands) in “required” upgrades over the past year. Items like safes and new signage were required – at dealer expense – again, only to terminate them weeks or months later.
And now, T-Mobile has opened corporate owned stores very close to these stores – after years of having the dealer as the local option.—
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