Clearwire registers another stock IPO
By Ville Heiskanen
Bloomberg News Service
By Ville Heiskanen
Craig McCaw's Clearwire Corp. filed to raise as much as $400 million in an initial public offering, the second time the cell-phone pioneer has registered the wireless Web access provider for an IPO.
The funds raised will be used for network expansion and other purposes, the Kirkland, Wash.-based company said in a regulatory filing yesterday. The sale is being managed by Merrill Lynch & Co., Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan Chase & Co. The filing didn't specify the number of shares or the price.
Clearwire, founded by McCaw in 2003 to build a worldwide wireless network, filed for an IPO in May, then withdrew the offer in July after raising $900 million from investors, including Intel Corp. and Motorola Inc. The company provides Web access in 34 U.S. markets, including O'ahu and Maui.
The offering would mark McCaw's return to the public markets where he became a billionaire in the 1990s after putting together the first U.S.-wide cellular telephone network.
He sold the company, McCaw Cellular Communications, to AT&T Corp. in 1994 for $11.5 billion.
Clearwire said it plans to list on the Nasdaq National Market under the symbol CLWR.
The company has lost money every year since it started. The net loss in the first nine months of this year expanded to $191.8 million from $89.6 million in the same period last year. Sales soared to $76.4 million from $14.7 million. The company had 188,000 subscribers as of Nov. 30.
McCaw aims to commercialize a high-speed wireless Web access technology called WiMAX that broadcasts Internet signals as far as 30 miles. Santa Clara, Calif.-based Intel, the world's largest computer-chip maker, and Schaumburg, Ill.-based Motorola, the second-biggest cell-phone maker, are backing that technology to gain faster Web access for mobile phones and laptops.