The Two Nextels

While not many people may realize it, there are actually two Nextels. There's Nextel Communications, which is the company everyone thinks of as Nextel, and then there's Nextel Partners - based in Kirkland, Washington - that is an entirely separate, but closely linked, company to build out mobile phone service in rural and under-served markets. Of course, Nextel Partners has a deal with Nextel Communications, so that the two systems work seamlessly together, and most customers don't even realize that the Nextel they're using may not be the Nextel they actually bought service from. The Forbes article here suggests the two separate companies strategy is doing well for both sides of Nextel and letting them concentrate on different markets without getting distracted by each other. Of course, the risk in these types of arrangements is that it could be problematic for both companies should the relationship go sour.

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