South Korea's LG to join Pecan Street smart-grid research

South Korean technology vendor LG Electronics is to participate in a smart-grid demonstration as part of the Pecan Street project taking place in Austin, Texas.

The company announced that it had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Pecan Street to contribute expertise in the areas of smart homes, energy management and consumer electronics until 2015, as part of Pecan Street’s Industry Advisory Council.

Its main focus is to be on the development of effective home energy management systems.

Atmel boosts M2M presence with Ozmo takeover

Touch-technology specialist Atmel Corporation has announced a takeover of WiFi developer Ozmo in a move aimed partly at boosting its presence in the M2M sector.

The specific terms of the acquisition were not revealed, but Atmel (San Jose, USA) expects to finalize the transaction by the end of the year and says it will be accretive to its earnings in 2014.

Clearwire, Sprint set up $120 million breakup fee


Sprint Corp promised to pay Clearwire Corp a $120 million breakup fee if its $2.2 billion purchase of roughly half of the smaller wireless service provider does not go ahead.

At the same time, Clearwire (Bellevue, USA) said on Tuesday it agreed to a "no-shop" provision, meaning it cannot seek other offers but could consider unsolicited offers.

Clearwire and Sprint (Overland Park, USA), its majority owner, announced details of their merger agreement in a regulatory filing the day after Sprint agreed buy out the rest of Clearwire for $2.97 per share.

Itron consortium wins $150 million smart-meter deal in South Africa

A consortium involving the Edison Power Group, South Africa’s largest electrical contracting company, and smart-meter specialist Itron has won a $150 million contract to roll out smart-metering technology in Johannesburg.

In what Itron (Liberty Lake, USA) describes as Africa’s first large-scale smart-metering project, the companies will provide support to City Power (Johannesburg, South Africa), a utility company in Johannesburg, by improving service delivery and efficiency through network automation.

Clearwire accepts slightly sweeter bid from Sprint


Clearwire Corp agreed to sell a roughly 50 percent stake for $2.2 billion to majority shareholder Sprint Nextel Corp, which would then have full ownership of spectrum that will help it offer high-speed wireless services.

The $2.97-per-share deal is only 7 cents per share higher than a bid many minority shareholders said was too low days before. Clearwire (Bellevue, USA) shares slid 9.8 percent to $3.04 in premarket trading.

Softbank signs $19.7 billion loan for Sprint acquisition

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.

Softbank caps Sprint's Clearwire bid; investors want more


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 offers $2.1 billion to buy rest of Clearwire


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.

Ciena sees better 2013 as telecom carriers upgrade networks


Network equipment maker Ciena Corp said its operating performance would improve in 2013 as telecom carriers boost spending to upgrade their networks after months of sluggish growth, sending its shares up as much as 5.5 percent.

Telecom carriers are rolling out their 4G LTE networks and are looking at optical equipment providers like Ciena who provide a key component to manage costs and modernize networks.

US regulators approve Dish request and spectrum sale


Federal regulators on Tuesday gave satellite TV provider Dish Network Corp the go-ahead to use wireless spectrum and also approved a framework for a spectrum auction next year.

The Federal Communications Commission voted to allow Dish (Meridian, USA) to convert satellite spectrum for wireless use but would impose restrictions that the company opposes. Dish is the No. 2 satellite U.S. television provider after DirecTV (El Segundo, USA).

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