98% of the votes cast at Sprint Nextel’s special shareholders meeting were in favour of Softbank Corp’s offer to acquire 78% of Sprint in an USD21.6 billion deal, the US firm has announced. These shareholders are said to account for around 80% of Sprint’s outstanding common stock, as of 18 April. Sprint CEO Dan Hesse commented: ‘Today is a historic day for our company, and I want to thank our shareholders for approving this transformative merger agreement. The transaction with Softbank should enhance Sprint’s long-term value and competitive position by creating a company with greater financial flexibility’. Although the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) still needs to approve the deal, both parties expect the deal to formally close in early July.