US satellite broadcast carrier DISH Network announced Tuesday that it had made a bid for Clearwire, topping Sprint Nextel's offer for the wireless broadband firm's shares by 11 percent.
DISH said it had approached Clearwire with respect to a potential strategic transaction, including an offer to purchase all of the Clearwire common shares at $3.30.
"We look forward to working with Clearwire's Special Committee as it evaluates our proposal," said Tom Cullen, DISH executive vice president of Corporate Development.
Sprint Nextel on Dcember had previously proposed the purchase of Clearwire's shares for $2.97. Clearwire announced on December 17 that it had accepted Sprint's offer. Now the company says that the "Special Committee of the Clearwire Board of Directors" has determined that its fiduciary duties require it to engage with DISH to discuss, negotiate and/or provide information in connection with the DISH Proposal. Clearwire added that The Special Committee had not made any determination to change its recommendation of the current Sprint transaction.
Clearwire has provided Sprint with notice, and the material terms, of the DISH Proposal, and received a response from Sprint.
Sprint says, among other things, that Sprint has reviewed the DISH Proposal and believes that it is "illusory, inferior to the Sprint transaction and not viable because it cannot be implemented in light of Clearwire's current legal and contractual obligations." Sprint has stated that the Sprint Agreement would prohibit Clearwire from entering into agreements for much of the DISH Proposal.