WiMAX spectrum auction ends

18 Dec 2007

The New Zealand government’s auction of 2.3GHz and 2.5GHz WiMAX-capable spectrum has ended after 30 rounds of bidding, having raised a total of NZD4.37 million (USD3.56 million). Six firms emerged with frequencies: Telecom New Zealand, Vodafone New Zealand, Craig Wireless, Kordia, CallPlus and Woosh Wireless. Telecom paid a total of NZD906,000 for two 20MHz packets of spectrum in the 2.5GHz band, while Craig Wireless paid NZD1.05 million for the same amount of 2.5GHz spectrum. Vodafone won 35MHz at 2.5GHz with a bid of NZD670,000, while CallPlus paid NZD500,000 for 30MHz in the same band. Woosh Wireless and Kordia offered NZD650,000 and NZD593,333 respectively for 35MHz of frequencies at 2.3GHz. Four firms registered as bidders but did not win frequencies: Compass Communications, Snap Internet, Spectrumania and TelstraClear.

Martin Wylie, CEO of CallPlus, congratulated the government for limiting the amount of spectrum available to any one company, saying: ‘the larger telecommunications companies were unable to bid the price up to uneconomic levels and dominate the auction’. He added: ‘The spectrum went to a variety of new players who plan to build alternate networks, creating competition for the ultimate benefit of consumers.’