LightSquared Buyer Backs Out

NEW YORK — Centerbridge Partners will not be buying LightSquared out of bankruptcy, according to The Wall Street Journal,’s coverage of a Manhattan court proceeding Tuesday. LightSquared’s spectrum was set to be auctioned off Dec. 11, with Dish as the lead bidder with a $2.22 billion offer. The auction was called off in light of a $3.3 billion offer from Centerbridge Partners, a New York investment firm, Bloomberg reported. Marci Ryvicker of Wells Fargo said Centerbridge’s exit puts Dish back into the bidding.

“Essentially it means that Dish has been re-established as the lead bidder for Lightsquared’s assets, without having to increase its offer,” she said in an investor note. “Barring another firm or fund stepping in to ‘take over’ Centerbridge’s proposal—which we view as highly unlikely—we would expect the original auction for Lightsquared to take place, beginning with Dish’s ‘stalking horse’ bid of $2.2 billion.”

LightSquared filed for bankruptcy in May of 2012 after nearly two years of trying to appease the global positioning system contingent. LightSquared holds spectrum licenses adjacent to that used for GPS in the band designated for satellite transmissions. LightSquared applied for and was granted a waiver by the Federal Communications Commission in 2010 to use the spectrum to create a wholesale, hybrid satellite-terrestrial wireless broadband network.

It would have been the first of its type in the nation, but test after test indicated the network would interfere with GPS operations, which are inherent in everything from in-car navigation systems to guided missile systems. LightSquared’s signals were not actually bleeding into the GPS band, rather, GPS devices were not developed with filters capable of rejecting LightSquared signals. The company, funded by Phil Falcone’s Harbinger Capital, fought unsuccessfully to rectify the situation.

Ryvicker said the auction likely will now take place on Thursday, Dec. 19.

“We view today’s news as the best possible outcome for Dish as it has regained its status as the frontrunner to acquire Lightsquared, without having to increase its bid,” she wrote. “At the end of the day, we think Charlie’s bid will hold up, adding valuable spectrum to the company’s portfolio.” Charlie being Ergen, CEO of Dish.

In separate news, Dish announced that it would partner with Sprint to test wireless broadband in Corpus Christi, Texas.

December 17, 2013 —
Dish and Sprint to Test Wireless Broaband
Sprint and Dish Network have announced plans to jointly test a fixed wireless broadband service in Corpus Christi, Texas.

May 8, 2013LightSquared Tests Spectrum Sharing
LightSquared is testing the feasibility of sharing spectrum with federal users.

December 20, 2012FCC Suspends LightSquared Build-Out Conditions
The Federal Communications Commission is giving LightSquared a break on its build-out conditions since the company is currently enjoined from using its spectrum as it intended

September 21, 2012 —McAdams On: Why LightSquared Still Matters
Writing off LightSquared would be a mistake. The venture is an object lesson in how spectrum allocation is meaningless without consistent receiver standards, and how one industry strategically avoided them by coopting adjacent spectrum.

September 14, 2012 —LightSquared Waiver Subject of House Hearing
he subcommittee, headed by Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.), will follow up on a February request directed at FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski seeking an explanation for the waiver and the process leading up to it.

May 14, 2012 —LightSquared Files for Bankruptcy
LightSquared has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in Manhattan, listing more than $1 billion in debts and in assets.

February, 27, 2012 —Boaters Gang Up on LightSquared
The boating public is lining up against LightSquared, if comments on the latest Federal Communications Commission public notice are any indication.

February, 16, 2012 — LightSquared Comments Due March 1
Comments are due to the FCC March 1 on the Commerce Department’s recommendation that LightSquared not be allowed to launch a terrestrial network.

February 14, 2012 —LightSquared Vows to Continue Despite Terrestrial Network Nix
LightSquared is not giving up on its proposed wireless broadband network despite losing its authority to launch on a terrestrial infrastructure.

January 30, 2012 —
FCC Takes LightSquared Petition to the People
The FCC is turning to the public regarding LightSquared’s request to operate in its own spectrum and not grant interference protection to global positioning systems.

January 23, 2012 —
LightSquared Submits Alcatel Lucent Tests Results to FCC
LightSquared continues to assert that its proposed wireless broadband system will not upset global positioning systems, citing test results from Alcatel Lucent.

January 18, 2012 —LightSquared Says GPS Tests ‘Rigged’
LightSquared says government tests of its network were “rigged” by manufacturers of global positioning systems, and charged the test committee advisory board with conflict of interest.

December 12, 2011 —LightSquared’s Travails Mount
LightSquared’s troubles are mounting with lawmakers and regulators lining up against the company’s proposed satellite-terrestrial LTE wireless broadband network. 

October 24, 2011 —
LightSquared Announces Brightstar as Preferred Supply Chain Services Provider
Brightstar will provide LightSquared’s partners with a comprehensive set of supply chain services so they can deliver their products to market faster, LightSquared says.

October 11, 2011 —LightSquared to Present at the 2011 Deutsche Bank Securities Leveraged Finance Conference10/11/2011
Michael Montemarano, chief financial officer and Frank Boulben, chief marketing officer of LightSquared, will speak at the 2011 Deutsche Bank Securities Leveraged Finance Conference in Scottsdale, Ariz. at 8:35 a.m. Pacific Time on Thursday, Oct, 13, 2011

October 3, 2011 —Sharp to Make LightSquared Devices; Wholesale Sign-ups Continued GPS Questions
Sharp has agreed to develop devices that will work on LightSquared’s proposed wireless broadband network, while wholesale resellers continue to sign up despite regulator uncertainty.

September 26, 2011 —LightSquared Signs AirTouch CommunicationsLightSquared today said it signed a wholesale agreement with its first device maker, AirTouch Communications. AirTouch, formerly named “Waxess Holdings,” signed up to offer LightSquared’s planned 4G wireless service under its own brand.

September 23, 2011 —McAdams On: LightSquaredgate
Such delicate fellowship requires a more artful approach. One must execute a substantial favor for someone who cannot be traced back to oneself, and then said someone arranges a little something for the beneficiary-in-chief. Absolutely no gift cards from Target or Trader Joe’s. If you really want to make that lasting impression, think more along the lines of a swing vote.

September. 21, 2011:LightSquared Announces GPS Filter Fix
“This interference problem is not a difficult one to solve, once you decide to solve it. We’ve begun manufacturing preproduction models and expect to have 25 available within two weeks--we are not talking in hypotheticals here.” 

September 15, 2011:General Says FIxing Lightsquared Interference to Military GPS Ops Could Take 10 Years
Gen. William Shelton also told members of the House Armed Services Strategic Forces subcommittee the filters most recently proposed by LightSquared to eliminate interference with high-precision GPS receivers could cause other problems. 

September 9, 2011:FCC Delays LightSquared Launch
The commission gave LightSquared approval last January for the Ancillary Terrestrial Component of its operation on the condition that it not interfere with GPS. That condition remains intact, the FCC said, and noninterference has yet to be established to the satisfaction of the far-flung GPS community

September 12, 2011 —LightSquared Signs on VoX Communications
LightSquared has signed a multi-year wholesale agreement with VoX Communications, a provider of wholesale and retail Voice over Internet Protocol services for consumers and businesses. This is LightSquared’s 14th partner agreement.

September 6, 2011 —LightSquared Signs Two More Wholesale CustomersLightSquared has signed on two more wholesale customers.

August 23, 2011 —LightSquared Signs InterGlobe as a Wholesale Customer
ightSquared has signed another wholesale customer, InterGlobe Communications, a business integrated service provider primarily serving the New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania region. The two entered into a multi-year wholesale agreement.

August 18, 2011 —Local Lawmakers Line Up for LightSquared
LightSquared may be in the crosshairs of the GPS industry, but local lawmakers eager for broadband competition are calling for cooler heads.

August 9, 2011 —FCC LightSquared Briefing Intended to Calm GPS Concerns
The commission granted LightSquared mobile satellite service licenses in L-Band spectrum in January, along with a conditional waiver for terrestrial use.

August 8, 2011 —
LightSquared Signs 9th Wholesale User With ClearTalk Agreement
LightSquared has signed yet another wholesale deal, this one with ClearTalk Wireless, a provider of flat-rate wireless phone services in the Southwest and West. The two entered into a 4G bilateral roaming agreement.

August 4, 2011 —LightSquared and PowerNet Global Sign Wholesale Agreement
Under this agreement, PowerNet Global will become a wholesale customer on LightSquared’s 4G-LTE network and will develop its own branded voice and high-speed mobile data services for its business and residential customers.

August 3, 2011 —LightSquared Continues Generating Commission Controversy
LightSquared is proceeding as planned even as its proposed network continues generating dispute. - See more at:

July 28, 2011LightSquared, Sprint Cut $9 Billion, 15-Year Shared-Services Deal
LightSquared and Sprint Nextel today announced a long-awaited shared services agreement. The two have entered into a 15-year deal that includes spectrum hosting and network services, 4G wholesale, and 3G roaming.

July 11, 2011 —NTIA Releases LightSquared GPS Interference Study7/11/2011
A federal report documenting GPS interference by the proposed LightSquared satellite-terrestrial broadband network has been released. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration recommended that the project remain on hold until the problem is solved.

July 5, 2011 —LightSquared Secures $265 Million While Awaiting Its Fate
LightSquared announced today that it has raised $265 million. The capital was drawn from both existing investors as well as new investors whom the company did not identify.

June 30, 2011 —LightSquared Blasts GPS Receiver Quality
LightSquared today spit nails back at the global positioning system community for building shoddy receivers.