SpectrumCo Gets Licenses
PHILADELPHIA -- SpectrumCo, LLC, a joint venture including Comcast Corporation, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications, Advance/Newhouse (cable MSOs) and Sprint Nextel Communications, was the winning bidder for 137 wireless spectrum licenses for $2.37 billion in the Federal Communications Commission's advanced wireless services auction, which concluded on September 18, 2006. Comcast Corporation's portion of the total costs to purchase the licenses is $1.29 billion. Time Warner Cable's portion of the costs is $632.2 million and Cox Communications' portion is $248.3 million.
The licenses provide many options and significant flexibility as the SpectrumCo partners evolve their plans for wireless. The members of SpectrumCo did not approach this investment with the intent of becoming the nation's fifth wireless voice provider, but to obtain greater flexibility in developing options for more advanced wireless services. While no plans have as yet been finalized, including no specific plans to build out the networks at this time, in coming months the members of SpectrumCo will fully evaluate all options including possible testing in limited markets.
There is a finite amount of available spectrum and it is rare that this amount of national spectrum becomes available at auction. The consortium team acquired licenses at attractive prices. The spectrum licenses were won for an average price of $0.45 per megahertz - pop, which was the lowest average price paid by all the major bidders in the auction. The spectrum licenses will create a true national footprint covering the MSOs' top cities including New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, and provide flexibility and strategic options.
Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK)
Cox Communications Inc.
Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC)
Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S)