Clearwire said to be planning to take Sprint financing offerAlex Wagner - Senior News Editor
Earlier this month, Clearwire issued an update on the situation involving Dish Network, Sprint and itself, revealing that Sprint's acquisition offer included $800 million of additional financing that would be spread into $80 million per month chunks over 10 months. Because Dish indicated that it would withdraw its bid for Clearwire if the company took Sprint's financing, Clearwire chose not to take the cash in January or February. Sources speaking to The Wall Street Journal claim that Clearwire will soon change its mind on the matter, though, saying that the firm now plans to take advantage of Sprint's financing. One source says that the move isn't meant to discourage Dish from its attempt to acquire Clearwire.
Sprint announced in mid-December 2012 that it had entered into an agreement to purchase the remaining portion of Clearwire that it didn't own for $2.97 per share, which works out to be around $2.2 billion. Less than a month later, it was revealed that Dish had made its own offer to acquire Clearwire for $3.30 per share. Dish recently got approval from the FCC to use the spectrum it already owns to build out a wireless network, but the company is looking for help with getting into the wireless industry. Meanwhile, Sprint would like to have full access to Clearwire's collection of spectrum to improve its own network.
While it's not yet clear if Dish will actually withdraw its bid for Clearwire if the company ends up taking Sprint's financing, the situation will obviously get a bit more complicated if it doesn't. Clearwire's Special Committee is continuing to evaluate Dish's offer, but the company is also still recommending that its shareholders accept Sprint's offer. Dish's chances of success seem like they would become slimmer if Clearwire does indeed take Sprint up on its financing offer, meaning that Dish may soon need to start looking a bit harder at its other options. We'll update you with more on this spectrum love triangle as we get it.