Sprint Nextel Corporation (NYSE:S) revealed on Monday that it had reached a deal to buy out the 49 percent of Clearwire Corporation (NASDAQ:CLWR) that it does not already own for $2.2 billion or $2.97 a share. This price is a notch higher than the price that it had previously offered of $2.1 billion or $ 2.90 a share, representing the carrier’s eagerness to gain full control of Clearwire.
Though the deal is seemingly conclusive, it will still need a go-ahead from Clearwire Corporation (NASDAQ:CLWR)’s voting shareholders as well as the company’s board (excluding Sprint’s holdings and Sprint nominees on the board). In addition, regulators will also have to sign off to the deal before any further steps can be made. With these considerations, Sprint Nextel Corporation (NYSE:S) explains that it expects the deal to close by mid next year.
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The inkling of the deal was next to certain
As we had reported earlier, the inkling of this deal was next to certain. Not only is Sprint the only national carrier that makes use of Clearwire’s network, but the latter is also in desperate need of additional capital. What’s more interesting is Sprint’s undocumented, yet widely known, reason for aggressively pursuing the deal. A bulging section of pundits argue that Sprint Nextel Corporation (NYSE:S) wants to cast its net over Clearwire’s Spectrum holdings in the 2500 MHz band. This argument stems from the fact that Sprint desperately needs to widen its footprint with regard to data. Mobile data usage is, and will continue to be, on an upward trajectory. Bigger competitors like Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), which already dominates the 4G networks, are set to rake in handsome figures from data in coming years. This means that Sprint will need to harness every resource it can in order to combat the overwhelming competition.
Clearwire shares fell 25 cents to $3.12 in premarket trading, representing a 7 percent dip.