Brazil’s second largest mobile operator by subscribers, TIM Brasil, has selected Ericsson of Sweden to roll out a 3G network in Sao Paulo, ahead of the regulator Anatel’s planned auction of UMTS licences, due to start later this month. Loureno Coelho, the commercial president of Ericsson Brasil, says TIM is keen to deploy the technology in Sao Paulo state and other regions where it intends to bid for 3G spectrum. The cellco is joining seven other firms to bid for licences when the process gets under way on 18 December.
On 12 December, Anatel confirmed that eight companies had submitted bids for the 3G licence auction. The full list of operators wishing to participate are TIM Brasil, Vivo Participacoes, Telecom Americas (Claro), Oi (formerly Telemar), Brasil Telecom (BrT), CTBC, Telemig Celular and Nextel Brasil. Anatel did not reveal which regions the firms intend to bid for. Each of the country’s eleven mobile operating areas will have four licences, one of 30MHz and three of 20MHz, in the 1.9GHz-2.1GHz range. Anatel hopes to raise a minimum of BRL2.8 billion (USD1.57 billion) from the sale.