Newcomers miss out in Czech 4G mobile licence auction

Reuters

The three existing Czech mobile operators, Telefonica Czech Republic, T-Mobile and Vodafone, won an auction of radio spectrum for 4G high-speed mobile data networks, the telecoms regulator said on Tuesday.

The regulator, CTU, said two newcomers, Revolution Mobile and Sazka Telecommunications, did not win any frequencies - a surprise given that auction conditions included setting aside space for a fourth operator.

Belgacom, Mobistar, Base buy Belgian 4G mobile licenses

Reuters

Belgian telecoms companies Belgacom and Mobistar and Dutch KPN's BASE said on Tuesday they bought licences to operate super-fast 4G mobile services in Belgium for 120 million euros ($161.25 million) each.

The 20-year licences for 800 Megahertz (MHz) spectrum were auctioned by the Belgian telecoms regulator, which had already said at the start of October that there were three bidders for three licences.

T-Mobile considering buying spectrum from private party

Reuters

T-Mobile US Inc is considering buying spectrum from an unidentified private party and would use some of the proceeds of a planned $2 billion share offering to finance such a deal, the company said in a regulatory filing on Tuesday.

On Monday, after the market close, the company announced an offering of up to roughly 72 million shares and said it could buy wireless airwaves using proceeds from the sale. The share sale could represent the fourth biggest secondary offering so far this year, according to Reuters data.

EE becomes first UK operator to launch LTE-Advanced

EE has become the first of the UK’s mobile operators to launch services based on Long Term Evolution-Advanced (LTE-A), the next-generation standard that represents an evolution of the 4G LTE technology now taking off in the UK market.

The network is being rolled out across what is known as London Tech City in the east of the capital and will provide connection speeds of up to 300Mbps, according to EE.
Services are not, however, available on a commercial basis.

PPF Group to pay 2.5 billion euros for Telefonica Czech Republic: report

Investment firm PPF Group is on the verge of agreeing a €2.5 billion ($3.38 billion) deal to acquire a controlling stake in Telefonica’s Czech business, reports the Financial Times.

According to sources cited by the UK newspaper, the companies are set to reach an agreement over the next few days.

Telefonica (Madrid, Spain) has been reported to be looking for a buyer of its 66% stake in Telefonica Czech Republic ever since regulatory authorities decided to reserve spectrum in a forthcoming frequency auction for a new entrant to the telecoms sector.

Leap shareholders approve AT&T takeover

Leap Wireless shareholders have given their seal of approval to a $1.2 billion takeover of the company by mobile giant AT&T.

According to the company’s press release, more than 99% of votes cast were in favor of the transaction, which will boost AT&T’s (Dallas, TX, USA) position in the US prepaid market besides shoring up its spectrum holdings.

NZ Telecom, Vodafone pick up rights to 700MHz 4G spectrum

Reuters

Telecom New Zealand and Vodafone have picked up the majority of management rights to the country's 700 megahertz spectrum as competition heats up to bring high-speed 4G broadband services to users in rural areas.

Telecom (Auckland, New Zealand), the country's largest telecom company, and Vodafone (Auckland, New Zealand) successfully bid on the maximum three lots of 2x15 megahertz lots for NZ$66 million ($54.55 million) each, while mobile phone operator 2degrees secured two lots of 2x10 MHz bandwidth.

Hrvatski Telekom to bid for unsold 800MHz airwaves

Croatian incumbent Hrvatski Telekom has filed an application to participate in an auction of 800MHz airwaves that regulatory authorities failed to sell a year ago.

The operator – controlled by Germany’s Deutsche Telekom (Bonn) – was one of two companies to win a 2x10MHz block of 800MHz spectrum during an auction in October 2012, paying €20 million ($27.6 million) for its license.

Rival operator Vipnet, the other license winner, also paid €20 million for its concession, but the remaining 2x10MHz block remained unsold at the auction’s conclusion.

Austrian telecoms watchdog to hear 4G auction gripes

Reuters

Austria's telecoms watchdog will hold a hearing of complaints by operators about the 2 billion euro ($2.8 billion) auction for fourth-generation frequencies, which was criticized for being too expensive.

The 4G auction in Europe's most price-competitive telecoms market raised four times the minimum set by the regulator and was the most expensive in Europe per head of population.

Telekom Austria risks credit rating for auction cost

Reuters

Telekom Austria may have to risk its credit rating, which it said earlier this year was its top priority, to raise debt for a costly frequency auction, its chief executive said.

The company said late on Monday it would pay 1.03 billion euros ($1.41 billion) to buy half the spectrum on offer in an auction for Austrian fourth-generation frequencies, almost three times as much as most analysts had expected.

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