NextWave to sell spectrum holdings in the U.S.

NextWave has enlisted the help of Deutsche Bank and UBS to assist in the sale of its U.S. spectrum holdings, which include licenses and lease rights for a total of 4.7 billion MHz/pops of spectrum comprised of 154 AWS licenses in the 1.7/2.1 GHz band, 30 WCS licenses in the 2.3 GHz band, and 39 EBS and BRS licenses and spectrum leases in the 2.5 GHz band.

"Since the completion of the recent 700 MHz auction, we have received multiple offers for our U.S. spectrum assets," said Allen Salmasi, NextWave's president and CEO. So who will it be? Here are some contenders:

  • Leap Wireless. Leap already owns some AWS spectrum. Plus the company recently complained that only the large Tier 1 operators won spectrum in the 700 MHz auction.  
  • T-Mobile USA. This operator owns AWS spectrum. The additional spectrum would help it increase its footprint and upgrade its network beyond UMTS.
  • Google. This company has deep pockets and failed to win any spectrum during the 700 MHz auction. Now it can buy some spectrum and push ahead with its open network agenda.
  • Comcast. This cable company has reportedly started a wireless division. Although it already owns some spectrum through its SpectrumCo joint venture, now is the time for it to really make its wireless play.
  • Verizon Wireless or AT&T. Although both these Tier 1 operators won spectrum in the 700 MHz auction, they also realize the value of owning spectrum and may purchase more. 

So who's it going to be? Take your pick from our list or leave a write-in vote in the comments below the poll hosted here.

For more:
- read this press release

Related: Click here for all of our 700 MHz coverage.