Verizon Wireless acquires more spectrum

Verizon Wireless this week said it won the spectrum license for the New York metropolitan area auctioned by NextWave Telecom for $930 million.

NextWave auctioned off its spectrum as part of a bankruptcy reorganization to pay off creditors and to satisfy outstanding claims the FCC had against the carrier. MetroPCS acquired the remaining NextWave spectrum in two Florida markets for $43.5 million.

The 10 MHz license Verizon Wireless bought is in the 1.9 GHz PCS frequency range and covers a population of 20.1 million people for New York and northern and central New Jersey, as well as Westchester and Rockland counties. The license will be used to expand Verizon Wireless' network capacity, the carrier said.

The transaction, subject to approval by the Federal Bankruptcy Court and the FCC, as well as anti-trust regulatory review, is expected to close by the end of 2004.

This is Verizon Wireless' second spectrum purchase in the last two weeks. On July 1, the carriers announced it was purchasing Qwest's wireless assets and spectrum licenses in 14 western states for $418 million.

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