Precisely five months since the last time Clearwire had a permanent CEO in place, a new boss has been selected to take the place of Bill Morrow. Being promoted to the position is Erik Prusch, the company's Chief Operating Officer, who will be faced with a monstrous challenge: secure roughly $600 million in capital to fund Clearwire's buildout of LTE. If none can be found, the company will be completely out of cash by the end of 2012. Fortunately, he's got some talent to help him in the arduous quest; backing Prusch as the Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors will be John Stanton, who's served as the interim CEO since Morrow's departure. Given the situation, it's a difficult position to be placed in -- either he'll be the hero that saves the company, or the villain responsible for taking it down. Check out the full press release after the break.
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Clearwire Promotes Erik Prusch to President and CEO; Names John Stanton Executive Chairman

Kirkland, Wash., Aug. 10, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Clearwire Corporation (NASDAQ:CLWR) a leading provider of 4G wireless broadband services and the largest wholesale operator in the United States, today announced the promotion of Chief Operating Officer Erik Prusch to President and Chief Executive Officer. John Stanton, the company's Chairman and interim CEO, will become Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors. Both changes are effective immediately.

"Erik has demonstrated the ability and talent necessary to lead our organization through one of the most competitive periods in the mobile broadband industry's short history," said John Stanton. "I strongly believe that under his guidance our business will deliver value to shareholders as we continue to grow our business and leverage our unmatched and unencumbered spectrum advantage."

"My personal commitment to Clearwire remains strong," Stanton continued. "Further developing a successful strategic framework that will allow our business to thrive long-term continues to be my top priority.

"Since joining Clearwire I have witnessed tremendous growth and change in the mobile broadband space and I recognize the many opportunities and challenges that lie ahead," said Erik Prusch. "John and I, as well as the rest of our senior leadership team, are focused on successfully executing the critical tasks needed to grow our business and fully leverage our significant spectrum assets in order to keep Clearwire on course as a leader in mobile broadband and the largest 4G provider in the United States."

Prusch joined Clearwire in August 2009 as CFO and led the efforts to raise over $6 billion in equity and debt to fund the company's explosive growth. During his tenure, revenue has increased by 427 percent to an annualized run rate of over $1.2 billion, the subscriber base has grown by 1,352 percent, and margins have improved by 80 percentage points through careful expense controls. He was promoted to COO in March.

Throughout his career he has successfully enabled businesses through periods of rapid growth, operational scaling and expansion financing. Prior to joining Clearwire, Prusch served as President and CEO of Borland Software, where he also previously served as CFO, leading the restructuring of the company and returning the business to profitability. Prior to Borland, he was Vice President of Finance at Intuit, CFO of Identix Incorporated and Vice President and CFO, Finance and Operations at Gateway Computers, Incorporated. Prusch began his career at Touche Ross and PepsiCo. He holds a B.A. from Yale University, and earned an M.B.A. from the Stern School of Business at New York University.