Cincinatti Bell to close wireless operation, sell spectrum

Cincinnati_Bell_(11297740075)Regional US operator Cincinnati Bell has announced that it is to close its cellular business, selling its spectrum licences to Verizon Wireless for $194m. The firm, which reported a wireless subscriber base of 340,000 at the end of 2013, down from 398,000 at the close of 2012, saw full year 2013 wireless revenues drop by 17 per cent to $202m.

It said that it will lease its spectrum back from Verizon for up to a year and continue to support its wireless customer base as it winds the business down.

In a market dominated by national operators with massive scale it is increasingly difficult for operators with such small cellular customer bases to compete. “It has become economically challenging for us to invest in our wireless network at the levels necessary to deliver best in class services to our customers, said Ted Torbeck, president and CEO of Cincinnati Bell.

“We appreciate the loyal support from our Cincinnati Bell Wireless customers over the last sixteen years, and we remain committed to providing them with wireless service and support throughout the transition period,” he added.

The firm said that Verizon will pass its newly acquired spectrum assets to venture capital player Grain Management, which specialises in media and telecom investments.

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