updated 04:40 pm EST, Fri February 4, 2011
T-Mobile may buy Clearwire spectrum this winter
T-Mobile, the last bidder left in the buyout of Clearwire spectrum, is close to finalizing the deal, according to a Friday report. Two sources who wish to remain anonymous said the buy could happen as early as this winter, though T-Mobile may be holding out to get a better deal. The carrier also needs to fund the deal, with some suggesting to Bloonberg that it may do so by selling its US-based telecommunications towers.
Clearwire is running low on cash, and its biggest investor, Sprint, did not offer any bonds to help raise cash. It also planned on selling debt notes in December.
The spectrum auction was supposed to end by February, but was extended as T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom remains the only remaining bidder, with Verizon never interested, despite rumors.
Clearwire needs money to build out its WiMAX network, while T-Mobile needs a 4G network to compete with others, such as Verizon's.