Crest Financial files lawsuit against Clearwire, Sprint

Thu Dec 13, 2012 5:09am IST

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(Reuters) - Clearwire Corp CLWR.O investor Crest Financial filed a lawsuit against the company and majority stakeholder Sprint Nextel Corp (S.N) in a bid to prevent a potential deal between the wireless providers.

Sprint is in talks with Intel Corp (INTC.O) and Comcast Corp (CMCSA.O) to buy out their stakes in Clearwire, Reuters reported on Tuesday quoting sources. Sprint currently holds 50.45 percent of Clearwire shares.

Crest Financial, which owns a 6.62 percent stake in Clearwire, said in its suit that Clearwire abetted its fiduciary duties by allowing Sprint to "extract the value of Clearwire's high-speed, broadband spectrum to the detriment of Clearwire's minority shareholders." (link.reuters.com/baj64t)

The lawsuit, filed in the Delaware Court of Chancery, requested expedited consideration of the complaint by May 2013.

Clearwire and Sprint were not immediately available for comment.

Crest Financial said it was seeking injunctive relief against "Sprint's pending merger with Softbank Corp (9984.T) and against Sprint's interference with Clearwire's previously announced plans to raise funds and build out its network".

Crest Financial also intends to petition the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to deny the Sprint-Softbank merger under its current structure, it said in a statement.

Sprint last month asked the FCC for approval of its agreement to sell 70 percent of the company to Japan's Softbank.

Some minority Clearwire shareholders have publicly expressed concerns over a potential deal with Sprint, suggesting that Clearwire should look at other options.

(Reporting by Sruthi Ramakrishnan in Bangalore; Editing by Maju Samuel)