Clearwire Saga Ends: Sprint Purchases Company - The UpStream

Clearwire Saga Ends: Sprint Purchases Company

posted Friday Dec 21, 2012 by Scott Ertz

Clearwire Saga Ends: Sprint Purchases Company

Thank goodness, the Clearwire saga has completed. My prediction when Sprint was purchased was correct and Sprint used their new found cash pile to purchase 100% stake in Clearwire. After massive financial problems { 1 } { 2 } { 3 } { 4 }, an owner backing out, and several cash injections from owner Sprint, their fate has finally been sealed.

I suppose Sprint decided after all the money they have dumped into Clearwire, it was time they got something out of it. The something they will be getting in this deal is Clearwire's 2.5GHz spectrum, which will greatly help Sprint in deploying its LTE network transition. Sprint CEO Dan Hesse said,

Today's transaction marks yet another significant step in Sprint's improved competitive position and ability to offer customers better products, more choices and better services. Sprint is uniquely positioned to maximize the value of Clearwire's spectrum and efficiently deploy it to increase Sprint's network capacity. We believe this transaction, particularly when leveraged with our SoftBank relationship, is further validation of our strategy and allows Sprint to control its network destiny.

It is nice to hear them talking about controlling their network destiny, because with Clearwire powering their initial WiMax launch, they let the control get out of their hands, mostly. Clearwire CEO Erik Prusch said about the transition,

Our board of directors has been reviewing available strategic alternatives over the course of the last two years. In evaluating available alternatives, a special committee conducted a careful and rigorous process, and based on the committee's recommendation, our board unanimously determined that this transaction, which delivers certain and attractive value for our shareholders, is the best path forward.

Obviously Clearwire isn't quite as excited about the sale, but it was the only option to keep the lights on. While it might be hard to watch your work leave your hands, it is even harder to see it go up in smoke.

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