Optus has put the cat among the mobile phone market pigeons by snapping up Amaysim.
The deal will see the merger of Australia's second and fourth largest mobile phone operators.
As part of the move, which will see Amaysim wound up, Optus also launched fresh digital brand Gomo to target the budget market.
Singtel-owned Optus CEO Kelly Bayer Rosmarin admitted the moves were strategic plays designed to disrupt the MVNO market and offer greater choice for value-seeking customers.
The purchase, which will cost Optus $250 million, will add about 1.9 million subscribers to the telco's service.
The offer is more than $50 million above Amaysim's market capitalisation of $197 million at the close of business Friday.
Amaysim chief executive officer and founder Peter O'Connell said he was very proud of the business that had been built over the past 10 years.
The veteran commercial lawyer who was also involved in the formation of Optus said since listing on the ASX in 2015, amaysim had achieved healthy organic growth complemented by successful strategic acquisitions of Vaya, Jeenee and OVO's customers.
"We had to continuously reinvent ourselves and adapt to intense competition and despite the challenges, amaysim has grown its mobile subscriber base, delivered best-in-class customer service and maintained its incredible culture," he said.
With just three companies operating mobile phone networks in Australia, Telstra, Optus and Vodafone, smaller companies that lease space on one of the three big networks are called mobile virtual network operators.
Amaysim offers sim-only monthly deals starting from $5 a month, so the move will give Optus access to a range of budget-conscious consumers.
Bayer Rosmarin said in its decade of operation amaysim had grown to be Australia's largest MVNO and fourth largest mobile provider in Australia..
"Optus will keep the amaysim brand intact and this deal will provide the certainty and backing amaysim needs to power ahead and accelerate its growth in the MVNO segment," she said.
The move will be subject to amaysim's shareholder approval, and payment adjustments.
Optus will also target the budget conscious mobile market, launching new digital brand Gomo. With its straight-forward subscription pricing, Gomo will target value-conscious Australians seeking easy mobile connectivity.
Business News Australia
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