Sprint offers $2.1 billion to buy rest of Clearwire
US-CLEARWIRE-OFFER-SPRINT:Sprint offers $2.1 billion to buy rest of Clearwire
(Reuters) - Sprint Nextel Corp <S.N> is offering $2.1 billion to buy the rest of wireless internet provider Clearwire, to get full ownership of its wireless spectrum.
The bid, at $2.90 a share for the 48.3 percent of Clearwire that Sprint Nextel does not already own, values Clearwire at around $4.2 billion.
The proposed offer price represents a 5 percent premium to Clearwire' closing stock price on Wednesday, but is 20 percent higher than the closing price on December 10, the day before news of a possible bid leaked.
The offer needs the approval of Japanese mobile company Softbank Corp <9984.T> and is contingent on the planned sale of 70 percent of Sprint to Softbank, Sprint said in the regulatory filing. (http://link.reuters.com/san64t)
Clearwire's minority shareholders include Intel Corp <INTC.O> and Comcast Corp <CMCSA.O> who own around 12.4 percent between them.
The No. 3 U.S. mobile phone carrier had a 51.7 percent stake in Clearwire as of December 11, up from the 50.8 percent on October 13.
The offer, which Sprint said it would finance from working capital, is being evaluated by a special committee of Clearwire's board.
(Reporting by Himank Sharma in Bangalore; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and Rodney Joyce)