January 29, 2013 / 5:10 PM / 5 years ago

Dish holds off on filing against Sprint, Softbank

NEW YORK, Jan 29 (Reuters) - Dish Network Corp has decided against filing to block Sprint Nextel Corp’s proposed deal with Softbank Corp, at least for now, citing its ongoing negotiations with Clearwire Corp and uncertainty over that company’s ownership.

Dish said, however, in a Jan. 28 letter addressed to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission that it does plan to participate in the next round of filings in the regulatory review of Sprint’s plan to sell 70 percent of itself to Softbank.

Satellite television provider Dish proposed buying Clearwire for $3.30 per share earlier this month, countering Sprint’s December agreement to buy out Clearwire for $2.97 per share. Sprint already owns 50.45 percent of Clearwire.

Sprint needs approval from a majority of Clearwire’s minority shareholders to go ahead with the deal. Many Clearwire shareholders have complained that Sprint’s offer is too low especially in light of the Dish offer.

Dish declined to comment beyond the letter on its decision not to file to oppose the Sprint deal. Sprint declined to comment. Clearwire confirmed that its special committee is still reviewing the Dish offer.

Clearwire shares were down 11 cents, or more than 3 percent, at $3.25 on Nasdaq.

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