Wireless Week: NextWave realigns company for broadband video

Thu, 09/18/2008 - 8:15am
Evan Koblentz

NextWave Wireless will sell its wireless infrastructure business, which makes technology for base stations and Wi-Fi equipment, to re-focus the company on broadband and video.

The company will also receive $100 million in financing from Avenue Capital Management and Sola, officials said yesterday.

Technology for base stations and Wi-Fi has not been profitable. “We funded them to the point now where we think it’s best to dispose of those businesses,” NextWave CFO George Alex said. NextWave hopes to make a sale by the end of this year, Alex said.

The company’s spectrum holdings are also still for sale. So far, $150 million of spectrum is sold, which was twice that spectrum’s market value, Alex said.

Combined, the financing and spectrum sale should let NextWave operate through 2010, he said. The company’s PacketVideo subsidiary is profitable and counts NTT, Orange and Verizon Wireless as customers. Google also is a customer for the Android mobile operating system, he said.

NextWave also is in the WiMAX chip business. There are no customers, although there are discussions with Sprint and Clearwire, Alex said. The chip differs from competitors’ chips because it includes a broadcasting feature, which Alex said bridges the product line to PacketVideo’s business.

Next for NextWave is a major sales push. “We’re literally going on a world tour to talk about it,” Alex added.

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