Japan’s Softbank says its board has approved the signing of a bridge loan contract for up to JPY1.65 trillion ($19.7 billion), which the company plans to use to fund its purchase of a controlling stake in US operator Sprint.
Softbank (Tokyo, Japan), Japan’s third-largest mobile-phone operator, announced plans to buy 70% of Sprint back in October for a fee of approximately $20 billion.
The deal would mark the largest foreign acquisition by a Japanese company of all time.
The Dutch state raised much more than expected in its auction of fourth generation (4G) wireless frequencies, with prices so high market leader KPN said it would have to cut dividends to afford its licences.
The auction raised a much higher-than-expected 3.8 billion euros ($5 billion) and the result will lead to fierce competition in one of Europe's most lucrative mobile phone markets as the winners roll out faster, fourth-generation services which allow consumers to watch video and surf the Internet on the move.
Sprint Nextel Corp's $2.1 billion offer to buy out Clearwire Corp appeared to be running into trouble on Thursday, as some shareholders said they wanted more money while Softbank Corp set a cap on how much Sprint could pay.
Sprint (Overland Park, USA), which owns 50.45 percent of Clearwire (Bellevue, USA), offered $2.90 per share for the rest of the company and said it would also provide interim financing of $800 million to the cash-strapped company. Any deal would need approval by Softbank (Tokyo, Japan), which has agreed to buy 70 percent of Sprint for about $20 billion.
Sprint Nextel Corp, the majority owner of Clearwire Corp, has offered $2.1 billion to buy the rest of the wireless service provider but it will likely have to offer more money in order to secure a deal.
Clearwire (Bellevue, USA), which said it is reviewing the offer, saw its share jump more than 11 percent to $3.06 after the offer, topping Sprint's $2.90 offer price and suggesting that shareholders were hoping for a higher bid.
Ofcom will not reveal the approved bidders until later this year or early next, but the registration process for the UK regulatory authority’s ‘4G’ auction is officially closed after prospective applicants were given just a six-hour window to submit their details earlier this week. In his recent statement on the economy, George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, said he expected the sale of airwaves to raise as much as £3.5 billion ($5.6 billion) for the public-sector purse. But this could be another case of wishful thinking by UK authorities.
China’s ZTE has received a substantial funding boost from the China Development Bank (CDB) in a deal the equipment maker claims will drive overseas investment and business development.
The agreement increases ZTE’s financing facility with the CDB to $20 billion from the $15 billion arranged in 2009 – itself an extension of the original facility of $8 billion set up in 2005.
Vivendi's SFR launched France's first fourth-generation mobile service open to the public on Thursday, kicking off a race with rivals in an increasingly competitive French market.
SFR (Paris, France) launched the service in the southern French city of Lyon and will add Montpellier in mid-December.
Lille, Marseille, Strasbourg, and Toulouse will be added in the first half of 2013, while SFR does not expect to offer the service in Paris until next autumn because of difficulties installing mobile antennas in the capital.
Weaker sales and the rising cost of device subsidies triggered declines in third-quarter revenues and net income at Maxis, Malaysia’s biggest telecoms operator.
While revenues dropped 1.2%, to 2.21 billion ringgits ($723 million), compared with the same period of 2011, net profit was down an alarming 17.7%, to 443 million ringgits.
Maxis (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) faces particularly aggressive competition in the mobile-phone sector and has been forced to cut prices and increase device discounts to attract and retain customers.
Regulatory initiatives and the ambition of mobile operators will lead to a tripling in the number of cellular M2M connections worldwide between 2011 and 2016, according to a new report from IMS Research.
The market-research company expects the number of connections to hit 326 million by 2016, from about 107 million last year, as mobile operators respond to the slowdown in their traditional markets by focusing on new growth opportunities.
Argentina’s government is likely to withhold a significant amount of spectrum from a '4G' auction due to happen next year, reports Dow Jones Newswires.
During a recent television interview, Julio De Vido, Argentina’s Planning Minister, reportedly said the government would retain an “important” quantity of the spectrum compatible with the high-speed mobile-phone technology.