I hear a potential end game goes something like this:
S/SB deal is muddied with CLWR..keep in mind that they are due in Court to discuss the original deal late this week or early next. Check PACER. This deal becomes too big a headache and Sprint will not want to be exposed too deeply as to the attempted theft of CLWR...remember, Sprint still needs friends in the industry. Once a thief, always a thief.
Sprint hands over the 112 million break up fee to CLWR, but, tries to get a little bit of consideration for the money. CLWR gives them a nice, but profitable, deal.
Then...DISH comes in, as promised, and purchases over 3 billion of spectrum...CLWR pays down its debt and embarks on a very lucrative deal with DISH and Sprint....yes, Sprint still loves its young CLWR, if only for the sexy stuff.
CLWR remains independent, relatively debt free and becomes cash flow positive in 2013-14 with a little help from DISH and Sprint. DISH becomes the guardian, so, the bk threat is moot.
CLWR keeps its trading symbol and will eventually be priced according to true value.
If we get this scenario..."which I heard at the water cooler", we get to 10-20 dollars a shares in less than 30 months. I can wait.
If it plays out real quick and easy, I would look for $4-5 dollars a share cash and a fraction of a share of stock from our suitor. Total deal if we get taken out is $6.75-$9.00.
The upcoming hearing will provide more clarification on the chatter.
Like the weather, he will change and say whatever it turns out to be was his choice.
The scenario has some truth to it: the buy-in from a partner is what Clearwire has wanted to happen so that they could have remained standing without being acquired at a low price. The problem is that Sprint remains in the drivers seat in terms of revenue and what DISH is offering is to gain access to spectrum only in the cherry picked dense urban areas... the very same part of the network that other operators including Sprint find are the choicest cuts of steak. They, in essence, have only offered to pay a price as if for hamburger, the average of the whole head of cattle, while getting their carving out of the choicest parts.
That is better than nothing, but just does not cut it except as a way to tighten up the opposing forces into a more galvanized, 'real world' opposition to Sprint's offer price. On the surface of it, as an immediate consideration, DISH's offer at $3.30 looks no better than Sprint's at $2.97 because it is much more selective.
Another problem with this has been that while DISH is a fair prospect to make use of the network in years to come, they will have to a) build their freaken' network, proliferation of competitive devices, mount a large marketing campaign, and build a new and converted subscriber base. There is no 'on switch' for revenues to keep Clearwire in business. On the other hand, Sprint has already laid down the gambit: they said they plan on dropping use of Clearwire's WiMAX network as they bring up their LTE network in the current and increased amount of AWS spectrum. They can play near-mid term hard ball: even though the growth on the new LTE networks will be outstripped within a 2-3 years and it does not match what VZ will bring to the table starting next year, they can, nonetheless, pull business away from Clearwire in the meantime while holding them to the current agreements to deliver LTE network service going forward.
The courts may well become the arbiters or it could be that a settlement is reached among enough of these contestants to lock things down.
DISH still wants what they have always said they wanted: to use 2.6GHz as a BB overlay in dense areas (the choice steak spectrum), while not paying as dearly as they should or giving up control of their operations to Sprint-SB. They do not offer to a) buy out CW, b) do enough business with them to 'make them whole' as an operator, or c) pay for CW to build the network and lease the choice steak capacity without being fgiven ownership of the spectrum.
There is not going to be a big new offer... because DISH is not Godzilla... they have limited funding and marketshare to push into a large expanse of spectrum. They offered to buy the steak at a hamburger price in hopes that this would a) Nudge Clearwire to hold on and perhaps T-M and others also make the same sort of steak for hamburger price deal. b) Cause the FCC and DoJ to make an arrangement to have some of the spectrum spun out or to have some gurantees put in place to require SB-S to offer up capacity to DISH, T-M, AT&T as equal access wholesale or some other dithering arrangement.
When Sprint made the offer to acquire CW I said that maybe they wanted to flush out partners and force them off the fence in their offers. That may prove to be what occurs... maybe others will follow or maybe that's it but now is solid enough for acitons to be taken.