DISH raises the stakes with last-gasp Clearwire offer

31 May 2013

US satellite TV giant DISH Network has reportedly increased its offer to buy Clearwire to USD4.40 per share, representing a 29% premium on Sprint Nextel’s USD3.40 per share offer, just days ahead of a meeting where Clearwire shareholders are expected to vote on its rival’s proposal. Although Sprint has sweetened its bid from USD2.97 per share, minority shareholders continue to insist that co-owner Sprint undervalues the company. Fierce Wireless reports that DISH has made its proposal public because of the time constraints; Clearwire shareholders are scheduled to vote on Sprint’s proposal today (31 May). In a letter to Clearwire chairman John Stanton, DISH chairman Charlie Ergen said that his company has ‘simplified and improved our previous proposal to provide you with revised terms that are both clearly actionable by Clearwire and unmistakably superior to the Sprint proposal. Importantly, we are prepared to de-link our proposed acquisition of 40MHz of your Broadband Radio Services (BRS) and educational broadband service (EBS) spectrum [both 2.5GHz WiMAX-suitable licences] from the offer we will make to your stockholders’. According to a Reuters article, which cited unnamed sources familiar with the matter, Clearwire is expected to postpone today’s shareholder meeting in light of DISH’s newest proposal.

United States, Clearwire, DISH Network, Sprint Corporation (now part of T-Mobile US)