Woosh moves to stop WiMAX auction, papers say

31 May 2007

New Zealand wireless broadband internet access provider Woosh has reportedly attempted to block efforts by the government to auction off radio spectrum, by threatening to call for a judicial review if it goes ahead, writes TMCnet citing local online news journal stuff.co.nz. New Zealand Communications Minister David Cunliffe has announced that the auction of spectrum suitable for WiMAX services will not now go ahead as planned, adding that the government was ‘considering submissions from stakeholders.’ However, industry sources say that Woosh’s eleventh hour threat is responsible for the delay. stuff.co.nz says that while Woosh has rights to about a third of 100MHz of spectrum in the 2.3GHz band until 2010, the government is keen to re-auction the spectrum at that date – denying Woosh the right of first refusal. The broadband provider currently has about 20,000 customers, but they face an uncertain future if Woosh fails. The company’s chairman Rod Inglis declined to comment on speculation over a possible judicial review matter, but did say ‘This spectrum is important to us. We believe we have got incumbency rights there and we look forward to renewing them and getting on with the rollout.’

New Zealand, Woosh Wireless