Sprint in talks to buy Clearwire for 4G LTE roll-out

Sprint is in talks to purchase Clearwire outright, Bloomberg reported on Friday. The carrier has been speaking to a number of firms including Comcast about the possible acquisition, which would help Sprint build out a 4G LTE network capable of going head-to-head with competing networks from Verizon Wireless and AT&T. Cox Communications has also been involved in the discussions, Bloomberg said. Sprint could take one of two paths: it could invest more in Clearwire, although it already owns a controlling 54% stake in the company, or it could acquire it fully. Clearwire has said that it needs roughly $600 million to roll out LTE alongside its current 4G WiMAX network. In late July, however, Sprint inked a deal with network wholesaler LightSquared, in which LightSquared agreed to pay Sprint $9 billion and give the firm several billion more in service credits over 15 years for the right to use Sprint’s infrastructure to build out its own 4G LTE network. Bloomberg said Sprint’s talks with Clearwire are still in early stages and a deal is not imminent.

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