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Sprint's $2B Debt Play May Help Clearwire

Jeff Baumgartner

Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) plans to sell $2 billion in notes earmarked for refinancing and network upgrades and, possibly, to help fund Clearwire LLC (Nasdaq: CLWR) as Sprint's wireless partner sets its sights on a Long Term Evolution (LTE) initiative. (See Sprint to Raise $2B.)

Sprint expects to complete the sale on March 1 as it tees up an offer of $1 billion of notes due in 2017, and another $1 billion of guaranteed notes due in 2020.

Why this matters
This sale comes a couple of months after some analysts suggested that Sprint will need to raise about $3 billion more to complete its LTE and 3G Network Vision upgrades. It also shows that Sprint is warming to the idea of also helping out Clearwire as its partner blazes its own LTE upgrade path. Clearwire's LTE plans got a much-needed boost last year when the company secured an additional $715.5 million via stock sales.

Sprint's new debt strategy is emerging amid rumors that the company scotched a plan to acquire MetroPCS Inc. (NYSE: PCS), because the board balked at its potential price tag of $8 billion in stock and cash, according to Bloomberg. (See Sprint Board Nixed MetroPCS Deal.)

For more
Catch up on the Sprint and Clearwire saga.

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

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User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:41:10 PM
re: Sprint's $2B Debt Play May Help Clearwire

Expensive business, upgrades.

User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:41:09 PM
re: Sprint's $2B Debt Play May Help Clearwire

Hope this time around they have a better prenuptial party!

User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:41:07 PM
re: Sprint's $2B Debt Play May Help Clearwire

Am I getting this right: with Clearwire, Sprint gets a network partner but no new subscribers, but with MetroPCS it would immediately increased its subscriber base? Can't say if  the price for MetroPCS was too high, but it sure seems that Sprint needs to expand it's customer base.

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