Total bids in Canada’s wireless spectrum auction have now passed the CAD2 billion (USD2.01 billion) mark after 16 rounds of bidding, already well above the CAD1 billion-CAD1.5 billion the government had been expecting to raise from the sale. The auction, which is now into its second week, is offering new entrants 40% of the licences, with the remainder open to all bidders. Among the new entrants, Calgary-based Shaw Communications is still leading the way, with the highest offers in 36 of the 292 spectrum lots up for grabs. Telus Corp is the best-placed established player, with high bids on 59 licences. Government critics had said the sale was biased too strongly in favour of the new entrants and that this would lead to low returns, but this has proven not to be the case.