John Paczkowski

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Dish Drops Out of the Bidding for Sprint

Dish Network CEO Charlie Ergen

Dish Network CEO Charlie Ergen

Dish Network declined to submit a new bid for Sprint Nextel by the carrier’s deadline tonight, leaving SoftBank as the wireless company’s lone suitor for the moment.

In a statement issued late Tuesday, Dish said that the “extreme deal protections” included in Sprint’s revised acquisition agreement with SoftBank made a counterbid impossible.

Sprint’s behavior has “made it impracticable for Dish to submit a revised offer by the June 18th deadline,” Dish said. “We will consider our options with respect to Sprint” while focusing on a separate offer for Clearwire.

While Dish’s $25.5 billion bid for Sprint was greater in size than SoftBank’s, the wireless company complained that it wasn’t final and “actionable.” So it set tonight as a deadline for the satellite TV provider to make it so by submitting a best, final offer. Evidently Dish simply couldn’t get it together in time, or thought better of it given those extreme deal protections mentioned earlier.

Dish’s decision to end its pursuit of Sprint clears the way for SoftBank to acquire the carrier. Sprint shareholders are scheduled to vote on the Japanese company’s $21.6 billion takeover offer on June 25.

Dish’s full statement below.

“While Dish continues to see strategic value in a merger with Sprint, the decisions made by Sprint to prematurely terminate our due diligence process and accept extreme deal protections in its revised agreement with SoftBank, among other things, have made it impracticable for Dish to submit a revised offer by the June 18th deadline imposed by Sprint. We will consider our options with respect to Sprint, and focus our efforts and resources on completing the Clearwire tender offer.”


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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work