DISH Grabs Spectrum, Cable Goes South

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| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

DISH Grabs Spectrum, Cable Goes South


So Charter has purchased the "cable television systems from US Cable of Coastal Texas, LP serving, in aggregate, approximately 16,000 customers in Missouri, including the communities of Hannibal, Moberly and Mexico," according to The Mexico Ledger.

TDS parent, Telephone and Data Systems, Inc. announced it will acquire OneNeck IT Services for $95 million. OneNeck, generated revenues of $37 million in 2010, will be a subsidiary of TDS Hosted & Managed Services, LLC (TDS HMS). OneNeck is a hosted application management and managed IT hosting services provider, specializing in ERP apps.


Meanwhile, DISH scoops up TerreStar Networks operations and spectrum for about $1.4B out of bankruptcy court. According to Rodrego Byerly, an M&A advisor, "The DISH deal structure accepted by Terrestar was unannounced. The balance sheet for DISH shows $2.9B in cash and marketable assets. There weren't any other bidders, so the DISH bid had to be accepted. Terrestar had approximately $1B in debt. The deal sheet doesn't have to require cash; there are other scenarios: i) Debt assumption or re-fi, which would put TerreStar's debt on DISH's balance sheet with minimal cash outlay (while also allowing creditros to exit); or ii) there could be a soon-to-be-announced capital raising event (like a PIPE or secondary offer); or iii) the deal could be written to satisfy creditors with some mix of cash andstock as the debt could be converted to DISH stock through some mechanism. Not enough details to say right now."

DISH recently purchased Hughes ($1.33B) and Blockbuster ($320M), including the stores. Some have thought that it was a smart way to enter the retail space for DISH and its various products (like Slingbox, Hughes broadband, DISH DBS TV). Byerly notes, "DISH is somewhat quietly building a broader distribution pipeline. When combined with its now more robust content and delivery channels, it's quite impressive."

TerraStar gives DISH 20 MHz of S spectrum adjacent to 20 MHz of spectrum that DISH is acquiring with its purchase of DBSD also from bankruptcy for about $1.4B. That's a nice block of spectrum - 20 × 20 - at the cost of $2.8B - is about auction value. "Both failed companies have spectrum with ATC rights, which allow them to run hybrid satellite/terrestrial IP services in satellite frequencies," according to Rethink Wireless. Other interesting pieces from that article are that this is Charlie playing chess and that Craig McCaw is in the picture.

[Please note some of this is DISH and some of this is Echostar, both controlled by Charles Engen. EchoStar is TerreStar's largest creditor.]

And then the Denver Post gets funny with an article saying DISH could now buy Sprint.

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