Sprint Nextel may be forced to snap up another affiliate

As a condition of the Sprint and Nextel merger, the now-combined company may be forced -- again --  to purchase a former affiliate. This is because the previous clauses each affiliate had with Sprint *or* Nextel gave them competitive protection -- which dissolved after the two entities merged.

The normal course of action would be for these affiliates to sell their operations and cash out, facing overnight, hard-hitting competition they weren't prepared for. But, nobody wants them -- so Sprint Nextel is buying most of them back -- causing quite a nice cash outlay in the process that kinds of kinks the cash flow of the newly-combined company one would think.

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