Verizon Wireless Store Under New Ownership


A national retailer last month bought out one of Payson’s locally owned and operated cell phone shops., an Idaho-based company with 84 retail locations across the country, including 20 in Arizona, now owns the Get Wireless Verizon retailer in the Ponderosa Village Center.

Along with the Payson location, bought out the LaBonte family’s other Verizon stores, including those locations in Fountain Hills, Four Peaks and Winslow.

Karen Apodaca, marketer with, said is not a corporately owned Verizon store, but rather a premium, authorized retailer. This means while the business follows many of Verizon’s corporate policies, it tailors its stores to meet customer needs.

And the biggest difference between a corporately owned store and one owned by is the customer service, she said.

Unlike other cellular stores where you walk in, take a number and have to wait, stores offer a higher level of customer service, she said.

“We have postured ourselves in convenient locations to make it an easy shopping experience,” she said. “We want to our customers to get the biggest, broadest and best customer service they can get.” currently has a number of stores in the Valley and is excited to expand into rural Arizona, she said.

Cell phone plans and phones won’t change much with in charge, but customers will notice a new sign out front.

Apodaca said most of the store’s staff has remained in place, many of whom have been with the company for years. The store has been in business in Payson for roughly 18 years.

Recently, Get Wireless was voted Payson’s Best Cellular Store in the Roundup’s annual reader survey. This was the fifth time the store has won the award.

Get Wireless consistently beat out the other cell phone stores in town, which now include two other Verizon retailers.

Apodaca said she does not believe the market is saturated with Verizon retailers because there is a consistent stream of new users — from teens getting their first cell phone to older people migrating away from landlines to cell phone plans.

This migration to new technologies also includes an increasing demand for new phones and tablets, which Verizon retailers sell and continually update.

Bottom line is customer service, Apodaca said.

“We are not just about selling a phone. We want to take care of you forever.”


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