Feds To Look Into Falcone Wireless Venture

Jan 14 2011 | 1:22pm ET

For Philip Falcone, the new year is starting off pretty much the same way the old one went out: badly.

Four U.S. Cabinet agencies want the Federal Communications Commission to take a long, hard look at the Harbinger Capital Management founder's plan to build a nationwide wireless network. Until the "significant interference concerns" are resolved, the venture, LightSquared, will not be approved, the FCC said.

"It is incumbent on the FCC to deal with the resulting interference issues before any interference occurs," the Commerce Department's Lawrence Strickling wrote to the agency. Julius Knapp, who heads the FCC's office of engineering and technology, said the agency would "ensure that any approvals would not result in harmful interference to current licensed users."

In addition to Commerce, the departments of Defense, Transportation and Homeland Security want the LightSquared proposal reviewed.

Falcone has poured some 40% of Harbinger's assets into the ambitious plan, which is set to begin trials in four cities this year. The investment has caused a good deal of concern for investors and may have contributed to redemptions at the firm, which manages just $7 billion today, down from more than $20 billion in 2008. It also hasn't helped the firm's performance; Harbinger's main funds were down about 12% last year.

The increased scrutiny for LightSquared comes after a difficult year for Harbinger. The firm found itself under fire from both investors and the Securities and Exchange Commission for a $113 million loan Falcone took from Harbinger hedge funds to pay a tax bill. And Falcone's move to create a permanent capital vehicle produced a lawsuit seeking to overturn the deal.


In Depth

Q&A: Executive Recruiter Talks Hedge Fund Closures, Hiring Trends

Dec 19 2014 | 6:58am ET

This year, hedge funds have been closing at a rate not seen since the financial...

Lifestyle

Cooper-Hohn Won't Contest Divorce Settlement

Dec 18 2014 | 9:51am ET

The ex-wife of hedge fund billionaire Christopher Hohn will not contest a divorce...

Guest Contributor

Alternative Investment Funds Face A Communications Imperative

Dec 19 2014 | 6:10am ET

A handful of the top alternative investment firms on both sides of the Atlantic...

 

Sponsored Content

Editor's Note

    Guidelines for Guest Articles

    Oct 22 2014 | 9:46am ET

    We are always looking for guest articles from hedge fund managers and buy-side firms.

    If you are interested in submitting a contributed piece for possible publication on FINalternatives, please take a look at the specs. Read more…

 

Futures Magazine

December 2014 Cover

Futures 2014 person of the year

Jeff Sprecher was simply looking for a platform to trade energies when launching ICE 14 years ago but it has grown to reach the pinnacle of both the listed futures and equities world.

The Alpha Pages

TAP July/August 2014 Cover

The Alpha Pages Interview: Senator Rand Paul

Senator Paul sat down in the debut series of the Alpha Pages Interview to discuss the broken tax code, regulation surrounding Bitcoin, and his plans for the 2016 Presidential election.