Clearwire, the Kirkland wireless-broadband provider, has resumed talks with Sprint Nextel on a possible joint venture to build a nationwide...

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Clearwire, the Kirkland wireless-broadband provider, has resumed talks with Sprint Nextel on a possible joint venture to build a nationwide WiMax network, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal Online.

In November, the two companies shelved an earlier partnership agreement after Sprint had ousted its chief executive and moved to rein back some potential initiatives, including the joint development of WiMax, a wireless broadband service similar to Wi-Fi but covering much larger areas.

Since that time, Sprint has a new CEO, Dan Hesse, an executive with strong ties to the Seattle wireless industry. Hesse served as CEO of AT&T Wireless, then based in Redmond, and later as CEO of Terabeam, a Kirkland wireless broadband startup.

The Journal, citing people familiar with the situation, said the latest discussions involve more ambitious plans, including merging Sprint’s WiMax unit with Clearwire, which was founded by wireless pioneer Craig McCaw. The new plan would allow Sprint to concentrate on shoring up its hard-hit core cellphone business, the Journal reported.

The news boosted Clearwire stock, pushing it up $2.89, or 23.2 percent, to close at $15.34.