LightSquared Inc. recently had lost the approval of the Federal Communications Commission to convert airwaves originally designated for satellite service to spectrum for land-based radio towers in February. The FCC withdrew approval for the company’s network after government tests found that the signals would interfere with global-positioning systems. Now Lightsquared has filed for bankruptcy, saying it “will seek to resolve the concerns of U.S. regulators who thwarted the company’s plan to deliver high-speed wireless to as many as 260 million people.”
According to the story, LightSquared, based in Reston, Virginia, listed assets of $4.48 billion and debt of $2.29 billion as of Feb. 29 in a Chapter 11 filing today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan. Besides its head to head battle with the FCC, Lightsquared has had financial difficulties. Creditors have requested that the company’s backer, Philip Falcone, step aside. In spite of that request, Falcone and the current management team will remain with the company, according to company spokesmen.
Bankruptcy “is intended to give LightSquared sufficient breathing room to continue working through the regulatory process that will allow us to build our 4G wireless network,” Chief Financial Officer Marc Montagner said in a statement. Reaching agreements with U.S. agencies may take as long as two years, he said in court papers.
Historical coverage of LightSquared in GISVoice:
Controversial LightSquared goes before House subcommittee
Going where no GPS has gone before