Light Reading
Regional operator will refocus on its fiber business, discontinuing its wireless operations after the deal closes.

Verizon Buys Cincinnati Bell's Spectrum for $210M

Sarah Reedy
4/7/2014
50%
50%

Verizon Wireless will acquire all of the wireless spectrum licenses currently held by Cincinnati Bell in a deal worth around $210 million that will see the regional operator exit the wireless business.

The carriers announced the transaction on Monday, noting that Cincinnati Bell Inc. (NYSE: CBB) will sell all its rights, titles, and interest in its wireless spectrum licenses for $194 million in cash, and Verizon Wireless will take over certain tower lease obligations.

The regional operator has been selling wireless service in Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky for the past 16 years, but declining revenues and subscriber losses caused it to put the wireless segment under review last year. Once it divests its spectrum, it instead plans to focus on its Fioptics line of broadband and voice services.

Cincinnati Bell will continue to serve its 340,000 mobile customers for the eight to 12 months it takes to close the deal, and CEO Ted Torbeck said in a statement that those customers don't need to take action at this time. The carriers expect the deal to close in the second half of this year, after which Cincinnati Bell will lease back the sold spectrum as it winds down its wireless network operations.

Why this matters
Light Reading predicted that the smaller operators would become spectrum snacks for the big four last year, following AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T)'s acquisition of Leap Wireless, as deals like this are really the only way the major players can bolster their spectrum position in the US.

In addition, it is becoming increasingly hard for the smaller players to compete against the big four, so an acquisition with a pretty decent price tag is a good exit option for the likes of Cincinnati Bell. (See Smaller US Operators to Become Spectrum Snacks?)

Related posts:

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(6)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
MikeP688
50%
50%
MikeP688,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/7/2014 | 6:27:34 PM
Re: Sprint's rural alternative
I couldn't agree more--and it will continue.  But, what is gratifying to see is some of the more "creative" players out there that would continue to partner w/the major players--the one that comes to my mind (and I have their hotspot is FreedomPop). 
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
4/7/2014 | 6:25:23 PM
Re: Sprint's rural alternative
Yeah I can understand that viewpoint, but I think it's about scale. Verizon is just acquiring spectrum, not a big swatch of customers. Cincinnati Bell is the 9th largest operator in the US, but it's still pretty small. And, it's customers don't have to move to Verizon, although i bet a lot of them will. May be an opportunitiy for its competitors to court those customers in Cincy Bell's regions.
MikeP688
50%
50%
MikeP688,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/7/2014 | 6:22:06 PM
Re: Sprint's rural alternative
This consolidation does not bode well for competition and choice.  That's the challenging part here--although it apperas that the FCC seems not to mind the extent of the consolidations and the decision it made to release additional spectrum.

 

 
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
4/7/2014 | 1:04:31 PM
Re: Sprint's rural alternative
From what I heard it's HSPA+ network was faster than a lot of LTE option in its regions, but it still didn't have a path beyond that. Sprint could've potentially give them that, but this was a cleaner way out to focus on its landline business instead.

It did have a loyal customer base, but only in parts of Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, which is probably why you were unaware.
danielcawrey
0%
100%
danielcawrey,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/7/2014 | 1:01:45 PM
Re: Sprint's rural alternative
It probably had to do with competing with Verizon. If there is one thing that Verizon has done well it has been its coverages, especially in LTE.

The VZ network is so good and dominating it probably was a disincentive for Cincinnati Bell to try to compete. And I didn't even know Cincinnati Bell had wireless services. 
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
4/7/2014 | 11:24:21 AM
Sprint's rural alternative
It's interesting that Cincy Bell found it too expensive to invest in LTE, which is a big reason they sold to Verizon. But, just last week Sprint announced its deal with the CCA to help, even pay for, LTE deployments amongst its rural customer base. Cincy Bell is a CCA member. Why do you think they didn't consider this option?
Flash Poll
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
The Inaugural Optical Innovation Forum in Nice

9|2|14   |     |   (0) comments


More than 170 attendees from network operators, service providers, analyst firms, and component companies from around the world convened in Nice in June for the inaugural Optical Innovation Forum, co-produced by Huawei and Light Reading.
Wagner’s Ring
Data Centers Drive Telcos Into the Future

8|28|14   |   2:20   |   (2) comments


Data centers are at the heart of key trends driving telecom -- network virtualization, the drive for increased agility, and the need to compete with OTT providers.
LRTV Custom TV
Why SPs Should Consider Cisco's EPN

8|27|14   |   5:40   |   (0) comments


Sultan Dawood from Cisco discusses Cisco's EPN, which enables SPs to build agile and programmable networks delivering new network virtualized services using Cisco's Evolved Services Platform (ESP).
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei’s Showcase @ Big Telecom Event 2014

8|26|14   |   2.56   |   (0) comments


SoftCOM is Huawei's framework for telecom business and network transformation. Haofei Liu, Solution Marketing Manager, Carrier Business Group, Huawei, showcases Huawei's SoftCOM architecture in this video.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei @ BTE 2014: Director of Integrated Solutions on SoftCOM & NFV Monetization

8|26|14   |   4.43   |   (0) comments


Libin Dai, Director of Integrated Solutions, Carrier Business Group, discusses Huawei's SoftCOM and NFV monetization. Huawei believes that NFV monetization should be service-driven rather than network-driven, and that operators should have network transformation, service transformation and a compatible and collaborative ecosystem in place in order to deploy NFV.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei @ BTE 2014: Director of US NFV Lab on CloudEdge & the Future of NFV

8|26|14   |   4.06   |   (0) comments


Sean Chen, Director of US NFV Lab at Huawei, discusses Huawei's new approach to NFV in open collaboration. Huawei believes that through Proof of Concept tests, it could help operators learn and communicate with the industry more effectively. Sean believes that successful implementation of NFV should have its values reaching to end users and discusses how Huawei's ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Highlights @ Big Telecom Event 2014

8|26|14   |   3.34   |   (0) comments


At the Big Telecom Event in Chicago Huawei showcases its high-level strategy, the SoftCOM architecture, which helps operators reduce the cost of ownership of their network infrastructure and generate additional revenue in the ICT service environment. Huawei showcases over 30 pilot programs from across the globe, focusing on the industry-leading commercial ...
LRTV Custom TV
VeEX – Live from the Show

8|21|14   |   5:58   |   (0) comments


An overview of VeEX Test and Measurement solutions including TX300S multi-service test set with VeExpress cloud-based management system, UX400 universal modular platform supporting 100G testing, and the redesigned RXT modular platform.
LRTV Custom TV
Transitioning CE 2.0 Networks Into the SDN & NFV Era With Telco Systems

8|19|14   |   5:19   |   (0) comments


Telco Systems' Ariel Efrati (CEO) and Moshe Shimon (VP of Product Management) discuss virtualization and how the company's new Open Metro Edge solution utilizes the SDN and NFV concepts to accelerate and orchestrate service delivery through its innovative product portfolio and software applications.
LRTV Custom TV
NFV Myths: Is NFV Still Several Years Away?

8|11|14   |   1:13   |   (0) comments


Some say that NFV (network functions virtualization) is still several years away from being implemented on mobile operator networks. This isn't the case. Operators can get started on their paths to NFV now, as this short video from Skyfire shows.
LRTV Custom TV
A New Security Paradigm in SDN/NFV

7|28|14   |   02:54   |   (0) comments


Paul Shaneck, Global Director Network Solutions for Symantec, discusses the evolving virtualized network, explaining how Symantec is leading the security discussion as it relates to SDN and NFV, and helping to ensure the network is protected and compliant.
LRTV Documentaries
Sprint's Network Evolution

7|24|14   |   14:59   |   (0) comments


Sprint's Jay Bluhm gives a keynote speech at the Big Telecom Event (BTE) about Sprint's network and services evolution strategy, including Spark.
Upcoming Live Events!!
September 16, 2014, Santa Clara, CA
September 16, 2014, Santa Clara, CA
September 23, 2014, Denver, CO
October 29, 2014, New York City
November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
A survey conducted by Vasona Networks suggests that 72% of mobile users expect good performance all the time, and they'll blame the network operator when it's not up to par.
Today's Cartoon
Hot Topics
Rogers, Shaw Take Aim at Netflix
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 8/26/2014
Utilities to Pump $11.2B Into Smart Grid – Study
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Utility Communications/IoT, 8/26/2014
Verizon Launches QR Code Security Solution
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 8/26/2014
Nokia's Maps Land on Samsung Devices
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 8/29/2014
Verizon to Launch HD VoLTE in 'Coming Weeks'
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 8/26/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed