According to local press reports, Portuguese telecoms regulator ANACOM earned a total of EUR372 million (USD497 million) on the first day of its spectrum auction for Long Term Evolution (LTE)-suitable frequencies. The auction, which encompasses frequencies in the 450MHz, 800MHz, 900MHz, 1800MHz, 2100MHz and 2600MHz bands, commenced on 28 November, with all three incumbent cellcos – Portugal Telecom’s (PT) wireless arm Telecomunicacoes Moveis Nacionais (TMN), Sonaecom’s mobile brand Optimus and Vodafone Portugal – participating in the process.
Bids for spectrum in the sought-after 800MHz band started at EUR45 million, with 900MHz frequencies priced at EUR30 million. Elsewhere, bids for spectrum in the 2600MHz band had a base price of just EUR3 million. Whilst comprehensive details of the bids submitted by Portugal’s cellcos remain unclear at this stage, Vodafone has confirmed that it paid a total of EUR146 million for 123MHz of spectrum (2×49MHz FDD blocks and 1×25MHz TDD block), covering the 800MHz, 900MHz, 1800MHz and 2600MHz bands. The government had previously indicated that it stood to earn EUR429 million if all of the available frequencies sold at their minimum price.