Dish Makes Counter-Offer for Clearwire
Sprint Derides Offer as 'Highly Conditional,' 'Not Viable'
by Karl Bode 08:23AM Wednesday Jan 09 2013 Tipped by AndyDufresne
Dish Network has made a counter offer to acquire Clearwire that tops the previous offer made by Sprint last month
. According to the New York Times
, Dish Network is bidding $3.30 a share, 11 percent more than Sprint. As some had guessed, Sprint's speed and tactics in getting a Clearwire deal done were largely in order to fend off a Dish acquisition of Clearwire
. Dish is hoping to build an LTE network and Clearwire's resources make a delicious target for Charlie Ergen and company.
Sprint sent us the following statement
on the news, calling Dish's offer "highly conditional":
"Sprint believes its agreement to acquire Clearwire, which offers Clearwire shareholders certain and attractive value, is superior to the highly conditional DISH proposal.
“In contrast, the DISH proposal includes a series of interdependent commercial agreements, debt and equity purchases and spectrum sales, which together with the other conditions required by DISH to complete the transaction, makes the proposal not viable. In addition, the DISH proposal would require Sprint to voluntarily waive rights that it holds as a stockholder of Clearwire and that it possesses through various vendor and customer contracts that significantly predate Sprint’s proposed acquisition of the remainder of Clearwire. Sprint does not intend to waive any of its rights and looks forward to closing the transaction with Clearwire and helping consumers across the country realize the benefits of this combination."
The FCC recently imposed conditions
on Dish's LTE build in exchange for lessening some of the requirements attached to the spectrum. Under the FCC requirements, 70% of the Dish LTE network needs to be constructed in four years. Dish's LTE network, rumored to launch under the brand name "Ollo," isn't expected to see any substantial commercial deployment until around 2015 when the LTE Advanced gear they plan to use on the S band is available. If Dish can't find a partner, the spectrum most likely winds up being sold to AT&T.