Clearwire Corporation (NASDAQ:CLWR) awaiting FCC clearance for sellout to Sprint
The United States telecom regulator, FCC has no plans of asking Clearwire Corporation (NASDAQ:CLWR) or Sprint to divest any of their spectrum in lieu of gaining approval for the latter’s proposed acquisition of Clearwire. The FCC is reviewing Softbank’s proposed Sprint buyout as well as Sprint’s proposed Clearwire buyout in one review itself and its votes on these deals may be announced before the week is out. On Thursday, Mignon Clyburn, the FCC’s Acting Chairwoman said that she has put forth a draft order to the other two commissioners of the FCC and recommended the deals approvals.
The regulator approval is the very last tollgate for SoftBank to traverse in its lengthy battle to takeover Sprint, America’s number 3 U.S. wireless provider. If this deal gets approved, it will be the biggest overseas acquisition by any Japanese company.
Clearwire plays a critical role in this acquisition as it holds a large segment of wireless airwaves which would help Sprint hold its own in the wireless space. SoftBank has warded off the aggressive DISH bids for Clearwire as well as Sprint. The Japanese company has also managed to gain shareholder support and national security and U.S antitrust regulator approval for the same. Now, the FCC has to decide whether these deals are in the public interest. .
What does the FCC do?
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is a U.S independent body that is directly responsible to the United States Congress. Its role is to regulate television, radio, satellite, wires as well as cable communicate in the country. Its primary functions are to keep users and consumers informed about telecom services, goods and regulations. It also enforces and maintains regulations like the Communications Act and represents the United States Commission in international and satellite matters.
Apart from this, it regulates television, radio and satellite services and broadcast stations. It is also responsible for policies and rules concerning all telephone companies as well as VoIP service providers. In addition to this, it presides over legal decisions and law hearings that are related to communication. Thus the FCC approval is critical to finalization of the Clearwire deal as well.