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Sprint Nextel still cleaning up merger mess, buys another affiliate

Chris Ziegler

Amazingly, Sprint's still trying to keep pace with scrappy regional affiliates miffed in the aftermath of its merger with Nextel; in many cases, the clear-cut violations of the non-compete clauses in place with the regionals have left the company with no option but to buy them. Latest in the affiliate roundup is Northern PCS Services in a deal valued at $312.5 million, ending the war of words (and lawyers) that presumably would've ended with an even larger payout for the affiliate after years of drawn-out courtroom proceedings. Though Sprint's gotta feel good about putting another looming drama behind them, iPCS is still out there lying in wait; no indication yet on whether Sprint's feeling a buyout there, too. Look for the Northern deal to close in Q3.

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