Chris Gleason, a principal at Taran Asset Management, which owns about 1 million Clearwire shares, said the deal has "zero chance" of being approved at the May 21 meeting.
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ISS, which researches proxy issues and makes voting recommendations to institutional investors, is closely watched and often followed in disputed situations such as this.
But even with the ISS recommendation in favor of the deal, Chris Gleason, a principal at Taran Asset Management, which owns about 1 million Clearwire shares, said the deal has "zero chance" of being approved at the May 21 meeting.
"It's not a situation where the vote is controlled by people who vote with ISS," said Gleason, noting that hedge funds, which represent a large amount of Clearwire shares, are not required to vote in line with ISS.
Guggenheim analyst Shing Yin said the only way shareholders would vote for the deal is if Sprint raises its offer: "I do think that if they don't raise the bid they'll get voted down."
Glass Lewis said its view that Clearwire has other alternatives is supported by an offer of $3.30 per share made in January by Dish Network (DISH.O), and a recent offer from Verizon Communications (VZ.N) to buy Clearwire spectrum for $1 billion to $1.5 billion.
Glass Lewis also pointed to "more attractive lending offers from both Crest and Aurelius."
But ISS said that certain governance provisions give Sprint an effective veto over Clearwire's other options. It said the Sprint offer appeared fair and that Clearwire appeared "increasingly unviable on a stand-alone basis."
(Reporting By Sinead Carew and Ben Berkowitz; Editing by John Wallace)