Thursday, October 18, 2012

Sprint Regains Majority Control of Clearwire


Sprint increased its stake in Clearwire to 50.8% by acquiring the shares of Eagle River Holdings for $100 million.  Sprint previouly held a 48% share in Clearwire, so this transaction restores its majority control of the firm. Eagle River Holdings is controlled by telecom pioneer Craig McCaw.  The transaction was detailed in an SEC filing.

  • Clearwire holds the largest spectrum portfolio in the U.S. but in upper bands.  Its spectrum is an average 163 MHz in the top 100  U.S. markets.
  • Clearwire operates a nationwide WiMAX network and is planning to make the transition to TD-LTE.  Its main wholesale customer and investor is Sprint, which has extended its 4G agreement through 2015.  The companies have outlined ways of bridging their FD-LTE and TD-LTE networks with dual-mode devices that are under development.  


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