Sprint cutting 91 staffers in Seattle area following Clearwire acquisition

clearsprintSprint continues to trim staff in the Seattle area following last year’s acquisition of Clearwire, the Bellevue broadband wireless operator started by telecommunications pioneer Craig McCaw.

Sprint, the third largest wireless carrier in the U.S., notified the state via a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification that 91 employees at the company’s operations in Bellevue and Kirkland will be losing their jobs starting March 1. That follows a layoff of 161 people last fall. At the time of that cutback, a spokeswoman for Clearwire told GeekWire that “75 percent of Clearwire’s pre-acquisition workforce will be affected by the separation process.”

That’s a large chunk of the staff. Clearwire employed 1,053 people at the end of September 2012, including about 400 in the Seattle area. It was unclear how many people worked at Clearwire in July, at the time of the Sprint deal.

Just this week, Sprint reported earnings that surprised Wall Street, with the company adding 58,000 new subscribers. Analysts had projected that the company would lose customers. Sprint is still losing money, reporting $1 billion loss for the fourth quarter.

We’ve reached out to Sprint for comment about the layoffs, and we’ll update this post as we hear more.