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Issue #2003 - 22 (August 2003)
(Updated August 13, 2003)


Cingular poised to buy NextWave licenses for $1.4 Billion US
Source: NWfusion

Cingular has reached a deal with NextWave to buy 34 wireless licenses from NextWave for $1.4 billion.

Cingular is the first provider to reach an agreement with NextWave, which lost its spectrum licenses after filing for bankruptcy. The FCC unlawfully repossessed the spectrum and was ordered by the Supreme Court to return the licenses to the troubled company in January. 

After the FCC repossessed the licenses it held an auction that included bids from Cingular, Verizon Wireless and AT&T Wireless. The auction, which concluded in 2001, brought in nearly $16 billion in bids. 

NextWave says it plans to use the proceeds from its deal with Cingular to continue to build its own wireless network. Once the deal is final, NextWave will have spectrum licenses in 61 other markets. 

Cingular says it is using the 34 licenses to primarily beef up spectrum coverage in areas where it is already offering service. The deal will allow Cingular to use 10 MHz of spectrum in the 1900 MHz band in the following cities: 

Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Salt Lake City, San Diego, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C.; Sacramento, Calif.; Gainesville, Lakeland and Sarasota, Fla.; Kankakee, Ill.; Hagerstown and Salisbury, Md.; Portland, Maine; Joplin and Springfield, Mo.; Manchester, N.H.; Poughkeepsie, N.Y.; Portland, Ore.; Allentown, Harrisburg, Lancaster, Reading and York, Pa.; and Temple and Tyler, Texas. 

In Tampa, Fla., and El Paso, Texas, the carrier will use 20 MHz of spectrum in the 1900 MHz band based on the acquisition.

El Paso, Hagerstown, Kankakee, Manchester, Portland, Ore., Salisbury and Salt Lake City all represent new markets for Cingular. The carrier already offers services in the remaining 27 markets. 

The deal must still be approved by the FCC.

MobileInfo Comments and Advisory: NextWave auction and intervention by FCC and US Supreme Court has been in the news for over a year. Cingular's purchase of this spectrum should enable it to increase its network capacity for existing customers and gain more customers as a result. It is a good move.

Note: This news release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and section 21E of Securities Exchange act of 1934 in USA. Similar provisions exist in other countries. There is no assurance that the stipulated plans of vendors will be implemented. MobileInfo does not warrant the authenticity of the information. Readers should take appropriate caution in developing plans utilizing these products, services and technology architectures.  All trademarks used in this summary are the property of their respective owners.

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