Virgin Mobile's sundry networks around the globe are a curious hodgepodge of locally-owned and Virgin-led ventures; in the States, for example, a bunch of random companies have skin in the game, including Sprint and SK Telecom. Up in Canada, the MVNO began life as a 50 / 50 joint venture between Bell and Virgin -- and Bell has now agreed to snap up Virgin's stake in the firm for CAD $142 million, which works out to about $121 million. To make sure the brand stays around for a good, long time to come, Bell has also announced that it has secured an "exclusive, long-term" licensing deal with Virgin to use the Virgin Mobile marque. It sounds like Bell has every intention of continuing to operate Virgin Mobile as a separate entity, though it'll combine some retail efforts and work to streamline operations by jointly acquiring handsets and the like. Considering that Bell's about to flip the switch on its HSPA network
, it seems like this could end up working out swimmingly for Virgin subscribers up there.