Verizon Facing Objections to $4 Billion Radio Spectrum Deal
Published on: 12th Feb 2012
Note -- this news article is more than a year old.
By: Simon Davies
A collection of US telcos have asked the telecoms regulator to pause its review of Verizon Wireless' deal to buy US$4 billion worth of radio spectrum from four cable network operators.
In a letter to the FCC, DirecTV, T-Mobile USA and Sprint Nextel asked that the company be obliged to reveal more information about its deal with the cable networks for them to resell Verizon Wireless services.
The complaint argues that redacting information in the public copies of the documents means they have an adequate basis to argue the public interest aspects of the proposed transaction.
The letter was also signed by the trade groups, the Rural Telecommunications Group and the Rural Cellular Association.
Verizon has always argued that its reselling agreement with the cable networks should not be considered as part of the public interest tests that apply to ownership of finite radio spectrum.
Last December, Verizon announced a US$3.6 billion deal to buy radio spectrum, which comprises of 122 Advanced Wireless Services spectrum licenses from SpectrumCo, a joint venture between Comcast , Time Warner Cable, and Bright House Networks.
A couple of weeks later, the company announced a US$315 million deal to buy spectrum from Cox Communications.
Fitch Ratings noted at the time that the acquisition is expected to extend the adequacy of Verizon Wireless' spectrum position in a significant number of markets to beyond its previously stated date of approximately 2015.
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