Sprint forms committee to evaluate Dish offer

Sprint Nextel board forms committee to evaluate Dish Network's $25.5B bid for the company

Associated Press

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (AP) -- Sprint Nextel has formed a committee of independent directors to review a $25.5 billion buyout offer from Dish Network.

The committee has retained Bank of America Merrill Lynch to act as its financial adviser and will provide an assessment to the full board, the company said Monday.

Dish said Monday that it's pleased with the news.

Dish Network Corp., the third-largest U.S. pay TV provider, made an unsolicited offer for Sprint Nextel Corp. earlier this month. Dish is attempting to block the sale of 70 percent of Sprint to Softbank Corp. of Japan, a deal which Sprint agreed to in October.

Sprint, based in Overland Park, Kan., is the third-largest U.S. cellphone company.

Dish's offer is driven by new technology and the growing demand from consumers to watch whatever they want, wherever they want to watch it. Sprint's technology could allow, Dish, based in Englewood, Colo., to get closer to that goal.

Sprint shares closed unchanged at $7.17 Monday. Dish shares rose $1.10, or 2.8 percent, to $40.10.

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