Dish Network slowly moves on a $6bn spectrum buy

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Analysts at MoffettNathanson (MN) called the deal ‘The Long & Winding Road’ almost a month ago, but even they could be excused for not expecting an even greater and much longer suite of negotiations to emerge.

The nuts and bolts are that giant telco T-Mobile is looking to buy Sprint in a $26 billion deal. But on the margin of the deal is Dish Network. Dish is looking to the FCC for permission to acquire additional spectrum – for which Charlie Ergen seems to have an insatiable appetite – and from T-Mobile/Sprint.

The main asset that FCC would likely want to see disposed of would be Boost Mobile pre-payment cellular division. The FCC approved the bones of the scheme last month on the basis that T-Mobile and Sprint sold off Boost to A N Other.

The FCC’s apparent logic is that they would prefer NOT to see a reduction in the number of the USA’s cellular operators (Verizon and AT&T are the other two majors), and according to reports the FCC would – sort of – be happy to see Dish/Ergen emerge as a cellular operator.

However, also prowling is Amazon (and probably others).

Ergen has made no secret that he sees immense value in spectrum, and his end-game would be to create an advanced wireless network.


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