Sprint (NYSE: S) has begun a new company chapter today by officially naming Brightstar Corp. founder Marcelo Claure as its next CEO, replacing Dan Hesse, who has been leading the service provider since 2007.
Hesse's replacement comes amid a number of reports that Sprint and its new company parent SoftBank decided not to pursue a proposed acquisition of T-Mobile US (NYSE:TMUS), fearing that such a deal would face too much regulatory scrutiny.
Sprint said that Claure will assume leadership of the company on Aug. 11. The service provider said that his first priority will be to "continue the build out of Sprint's network by leveraging its strong spectrum holdings as well as ensuring that Sprint always maintains truly competitive offers in the marketplace."
Claure, 43, founded Brightstar in 1997 and made it into a leading wireless device distributor. According to a FierceWirelesss report, SoftBank agreed last fall to take a 57 percent stake in Brightstar Corp. for $1.26 billion, and Claure joined Sprint's board in January. Claure will resign from his position at Brightstar and SoftBank announced it would acquire Claure's remaining interest in the company.
At the same time, the service provider is enhancing its struggling wireline business by giving its large enterprise customers that need reach into Russia another wireline option by establishing a Point of Presence (PoP) in IXcellerate's Moscow One Data Center.
The partnership with IXcellerate, which is part of an ongoing expansion of its core network backbone, will enable Sprint's global customers to get connectivity to clients and partners in Moscow, Russia.
What drove Sprint to choose IXcellerate's Moscow One Data Center was that it offers connectivity to a large host of local carriers and ISPs and the opportunity to create new business opportunities for multinational customers looking to expand their presence throughout the region. Sprint said that it is enhancing the reach of its international network to provide its customers close proximity and "optimal" connectivity to IXcellerate's clients and partners in Moscow.
Russia is just one of several international countries where Sprint is expanding its service presence.
Michael Rolff, director of EMEA Network Services at Sprint, said that it "is investing in its network capabilities within Europe, Middle East and Africa."
In addition to Russia, the service provider struck a similar relationship with Interxion last April to deepen its European presence with a PoP in Madrid.
Over the past three years, Sprint has expanded the reach of its wireline-based MPLS service in more than 155 countries while expanding its presence into new regions by building out a mix of its own facilities and establishing interconnection (network-to-network interconnection) agreements with other local carriers. It also offers Ethernet access in 118 countries.
While the service provider has been building up its wireline holdings, the company has struggled in recent quarters. Sprint's second quarter wireline revenues were $746 million, down sequentially and year-over-year from $770 million in the first quarter of 2014 and $910 million in the same period a year ago.
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