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LightSquared CEO resigns, casting shadow on 4G plans

Company's future has been in question since the FCC moved to block the launch of its high-speed network.

LightSquared CEO Sanjiv Ahuja has stepped down as the company's chief executive officer.

The decision, announced this morning, does not shed much light as to exactly why Ahuja resigned, but reports have already circulating suggesting it has to do something with the Federal Communication Commission's move to block the launch of its 4G network.

In November, Ahuja spoke at the Open Mobile Summit in San Francisco, arguing that there is a disparity between demand for data and the amount of available spectrum, and that the United States is not ready to handle those problems.

Nevertheless, Ahuja will continue to stay with LightSquared as chairman of the board.

LightSquared has announced that a search for a new CEO is already under way. Until one is selected, Chief Network Officer Doug Smith and Chief Financial Officer Marc Montagner will serve as interim co-chief operating officers.

Also involved in the reshuffling is Philip A. Falcone, CEO and CIO of Harbinger Capital Partners, who has been appointed to the company's board of directors.

Falcone offered several prepared comments about where LightSquared is headed now:

We are, furthermore, committed to working with the appropriate entities to find a solution to the recent regulatory issues. We, of course, agree that it is critical to ensure that national security, aviation and the GPS communities are protected. I am confident that working together, we can solve this problem and bring the American consumer the lower priced 4G wireless alternative they need and deserve.

This story originally appeared at ZDNet's Between the Lines under the headline"LightSquared CEO steps down; 4G plans look uncertain".