Sprint Corp. is set to become the first U.S. telecom operator to tap the securitization market to help offset the expense of providing customers with financing for mobile phones.

Wireless carriers are increasingly embracing plans that let customers pay for devices in installments, often with no down payment. Since the carriers must pay vendors for the equipment upfront, these plans tie up a lot of working capital, particularly for expensive smartphones. Securitization offers a way to free up working capital by selling the rights to future installment payments.

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