Clear Talk Signs Agreement to Purchase Lower 700 MHz Spectrum Licenses (update)

UPDATE - Wednesday, April 17: Verizon Wireless and Clear Talk completed this spectrum purchase on April 16, 2013.

Nov. 28 - Clear Talk, a wireless service provider with operations in multiple states, last week signed an agreement to acquire from Verizon Wireless 10 lower 700 MHz B-block licenses covering five markets in Texas as well as markets in Maryland, Georgia, Florida, Nevada and New Mexico. The 10 markets have a population of 2.1 million. The purchase is subject to FCC approval. 

The agreement with Clear Talk is the third to be signed in as many weeks as a result of Verizon Wireless’ previously announced sale process for its lower 700 MHz spectrum licenses. Nortex Communications in Texas and Panhandle Telecommunications Systems in Oklahoma were the first two companies to sign agreements.

Verizon Wireless decided last spring to explore the sale of its lower 700 MHz spectrum licenses to rationalize its spectrum holdings and enable more spectrum to reach the marketplace where it can be used for the benefit of customers. The company is currently evaluating bids for its other lower 700 MHz licenses which cover numerous major cities and dozens of smaller markets across the country.

Since 2011, Verizon Wireless has sold or has agreed to sell 36 of its lower 700 MHz spectrum licenses to 10 different telecommunications companies, including the three agreements announced recently. In addition, through its LTE in Rural America program, Verizon Wireless is leasing upper 700 MHz C-block spectrum to 20 rural operators to jumpstart the delivery of 4G LTE in rural areas.

Stephens Inc., an independent financial services firm, and Loop Capital Markets LLC, a minority-owned full service investment bank, managed the offering process.