Verizon to acquire AWS spectrum from SpectrumCo for $3.6 billion

By on December 2, 2011, 11:00 AM

Verizon Wireless has announced plans to purchase a bundle of spectrum licenses from SpectrumCo, a joint venture between Comcast Corporation, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks for $3.6 billion. The deal will provide Verizon with 122 Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) licenses covering 259 million POPs that will ultimately allow them to expand their wireless network to more customers.

Comcast owns 63.3 percent of SpectrumCo and will receive $2.3 billion from the sale. Time Warner represents a 31.2 percent ownership and will earn $1.1 billion while Bright House is responsible for the remaining 5.3 percent, good for $189 million.

In addition to the spectrum deal, the companies have also inked an agreement providing for the sale of various products and services. As it reads, the cable companies and Verizon will become agents to sell one another’s products. The cable providers will eventually have the option to sell Verizon wireless service at wholesale price, a potentially attractive offer for customers that already utilize Verizon for their mobile needs and one of the three telecommunications providers for pay TV.

As Phone Scoop points out, the AWS spectrum falls under the 1700MHz band while Verizon’s CDMA network operates on 850MHz and 1900MHz bands and their LTE network uses the 700MHz spectrum. Verizon didn’t specify what they plan to do with the newly acquired spectrum but if we had to guess, it’ll likely be put to work for 4G LTE services.

As is the norm, the sale and transfer is subject to approval by the Federal Communications Commission and other customary conditions.




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