Sprint Looks to Invest Further in Clearwire: Reports
The wireless network operator, already a Clearwire investor, may eventually acquire the company, according to a report.Sprint reportedly is in talks with Clearwire, which provides 4G wireless broadband services in the United States, to further invest in the company and possibly acquire it. Citing unidentified sources familiar with the talks, Bloomberg News reported that Sprint would possibly team up with cable company Comcast, also a Clearwire investor. The sources said talks are only in the beginning stages and nothing has been finalized. "The cable guys have this stake in Clearwire that they're not doing anything with, they've got this spectrum they're not doing anything with, they've got this relationship with Sprint they're not doing anything with, and they don't have a wireless strategy," Jonathan Chaplin, an analyst at Credit Suisse AG in New York, told Bloomberg. "For Sprint, anything that shows more commitment from cable is really positive."
Craig Moffett, an analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. in New York, told Bloomberg that cable companies like Comcast and Time Warner, also a Clearwire investor, are interested in Sprint's continued existence as a wireless carrier, though he said he was unsure as to where Sprint would get the money to build out Clearwire's network. "It's going to take eight times as much square mileage to build the second half of Clearwire's network as it did the first half, because the U.S. population is so spread out," Moffett said in a Bloomberg interview. "Sprint can't live without the rest of Clearwire, there's no plan B, but Sprint doesn't have enough money to fund it once they've got it."