The speculation is building concerning the Alltel spectrum divestiture by Verizon Wireless. The divestiture was mandated by regulators as a condition of Alltel’s acquisition by Verizon. There are over 100 markets in 22 states at stake, and Bloomberg News is speculating that Cox, the nation’s third largest cable MSO, is in the running. AT&T is also widely believed to be eyeing that spectrum.
Cox’s wireless strategy differs from their cable brethren, of which many are invested in Clearwire. Cox participated in both the 700 Mhz and AWS wireless spectrum auctions, and has previously announced wireless plans already in play. They are privately held and therefore have more room to stomach expensive wireless investments. Admittedly so, we’re participating in the speculation. There’s no confirmation of Cox’s interest in the spectrum. But it is known that a cable MSO or two are looking at the Alltel spectrum, and Cox is the logical best fit.