& cplSiteName &

Verizon Buys Cincinnati Bell's Spectrum for $210M

Sarah Thomas
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        ADD A COMMENT
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). 
Sarah Thomas
50%
50%
Sarah Thomas,
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.

 

 
Sarah Thomas
50%
50%
Sarah Thomas,
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. 
Sarah Thomas
50%
50%
Sarah Thomas,
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?
Light Reading’s Upskill U is a FREE, interactive, online educational resource that delivers must-have education on themes that relate to the overall business transformation taking place in the communications industry.
NEXT COURSE
Friday, September 30, 1:00PM EDT
Gigabit & the Great Migration
Robert Howald, Vice President, Network Architecture, Comcast
UPCOMING COURSE SCHEDULE
Wednesday, October 5, 1:00PM EDT
Gigabit & Smart Cities
Joe Kochan, COO & Co-Founder, US Ignite
Friday, October 7, 1:00PM EDT
Gigabit & DOCSIS 3.1
Ty Pearman, Director, Access Architecture, Comcast
Wednesday, October 19, 1:00PM EDT
Securing a Virtual World
Rita Marty, Executive Director, Mobility and Cloud Security, Chief Security Office, AT&T
in association with:
From The Founder
Light Reading today starts a new voyage as part of a larger Enterprise.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Interviews
CenturyLink: SDN/NFV Pose New Interconnection Possibilities

9|28|16   |   04:37   |   (0) comments


Network operators should develop new APIs and business processes for reselling virtual assets to each other, says CenturyLink's Bill Walker. That will enable them to build digital business portfolios that help them avoid becoming commodity transport providers.
LRTV Interviews
Level 3: Overcoming Terror of Being Supplier, Integrator & Developer

9|28|16   |     |   (0) comments


At Light Reading's NFV & Carrier SDN event in Denver, Travis Ewert of Level 3 Communications said there is terror in becoming supplier, integrator and developer, but it can be overcome and be cost effective.
LRTV Custom TV
Introducing IoT World News

9|27|16   |   01:43   |   (0) comments


Self-driving cars, medical sensors, smart cities... and refrigerators. In order to address the huge scope of IoT, KNect365 has created a unique online community that will help businesses to understand and monetize the opportunities that live within the IoT market. We look forward to welcoming you to IoT World News -- your gateway to a better connected future.
LRTV Interviews
AT&T: Re-usable Functions Next NFV Key

9|27|16   |   06:03   |   (0) comments


The next generation of NFV has to break functions down into re-usable software chunks, making everything much more cloud-like.
LRTV Interviews
Masergy on Security: Attackers Gaining Upper Hand

9|27|16   |   5:10   |   (2) comments


At Light Reading's NFV & Carrier SDN event in Denver, Ray Watson, vice president of Global Technology at Masergy, says that because of the growth in virtualization, the threat landscape is shifting in favor of the attackers. As a result, service providers need to think beyond just defending the perimeter and take a more holistic approach to security.
LRTV Interviews
Verizon Takes Next Step on Biz Virtualization Journey

9|26|16   |   4:38   |   (2) comments


At September's NFV & Carrier SDN event in Denver, Light Reading sat down with Victoria Lonker, director of Product and New Business Innovation at Verizon, to chat about where the carrier is with delivering virtualized services to business customers.
LRTV Interviews
Global Services: The $40B Face-Off

9|26|16   |   05:53   |   (1) comment


More service providers than ever before are battling it out to win a slice of what is now a $40 billion global communications services pie, explains Ovum Principal Analyst David Molony.
LRTV Documentaries
MEC Congress: The Key Takeaways

9|22|16   |   03:25   |   (3) comments


Three key takeaways from the Mobile Edge Computing (MEC) Congress in Munich, Germany.
Wagner’s Ring
Time to Shut Up About 'Dumb Pipes'

9|22|16   |     |   (12) comments


Service providers can't compete with OTT players. It just isn't in their DNA. Instead, service providers need to embrace what they're good at -- providing reliable, secure connectivity.
Wagner’s Ring
Keeping Your Tech Career Going After 50

9|21|16   |     |   (13) comments


How do you keep your career moving forward when you're past the half-century mark?
LRTV Interviews
Peering Into the Digital Future

9|20|16   |   04:25   |   (0) comments


Nick Thomas, practice leader of digital media at Ovum, talks about how digital transformation in the technology, media and telecom sectors will enable the development of a new range of applications and services for enterprises and consumers and how the upcoming Digital Futures event in London will examine ...
LRTV Custom TV
Napatech Tackles NFV's Major Challenge

9|7|16   |   08:42   |   (0) comments


One of the main challenges for network operators introducing NFV is to combine performance and flexibility in a cost-effective way, but there is a solution, explains Napatech's Dan Joe Barry.
Upcoming Live Events
November 3, 2016, The Montcalm Marble Arch, London
November 30, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 1, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York, NY
December 6-8, 2016, The Westin Excelsior, Rome
May 16-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Hot Topics
Verizon CFO: Eat Our (Fixed) 5G Dust!
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 9/22/2016
WiCipedia: The Women Helping Women Edition
Eryn Leavens, Special Features & Copy Editor, 9/23/2016
Eurobites: Telefónica Taps Juniper for Network Security
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 9/26/2016
Open Source Getting on My Nerves
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 9/26/2016
Telstra Sees Quadrupled Data Capacity by 2020
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 9/28/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Light Reading CEO Steve Saunders and UXP Systems CEO Gemini Waghmare discuss the strategic importance of digital identity for operators in the midst of transformation.
Join us for an in-depth interview between Steve Saunders of Light Reading and Alexis Black Bjorlin of Intel as they discuss the release of the company's Silicon Photonics platform, its performance, long-term prospects, customer expectations and much more.
Animals with Phones
There's Nothing Like Missing a Full Minute of Pokémon Go Click Here
Live Digital Audio

A vital part of increasing the number of women in comms is transforming the ways companies can support and empower women. While progressive company policies that support both men and women in achieving work-life balance are a step in the right direction, creating a company culture that supports those policies can at times be more challenging.

During this show, we'll talk to Lynn Comp, Senior Director of Industry and Sales Enabling (ISE) in the Network Platforms Group at Intel, about why those challenges exist and how companies can overcome them. She'll provide insight into how Intel has worked to create a culture that supports work-life balance, and provide steps and guidance for other companies wishing to do the same. We will also leave plenty of time to get your questions answered live on the air.