Latvian quartet bag 2600MHz spectrum in PUC auction

4 Jan 2012

Four companies have been awarded fourth-generation spectrum after the conclusion of an auction conducted by Latvia’s Public Utilities Commission (PUC), DB.lv reports. The regulator launched the sale process on 2 January 2012, in line with previously announced plans, and after a day and half of bidding Latvijas Mobilais Telefons (LMT), Tele 2 Latvia, Bite Latvia and Baltcom have all reportedly walked away with new frequencies in the 2600MHz band.

Full details of the amounts paid by each operator for their respective spectrum allocations have yet to be disclosed by the PUC, but with the starting price for each block set at LVL200,000 (USD372,000), the report claims that the country’s largest cellco by subscribers, LMT, paid LVL772,000 for its new frequencies. LMT is widely expected to utilise the frequencies to bolster its Long Term Evolution (LTE) service, which it launched commercially in May last year.

Five blocks of spectrum had, in fact, been made available by the regulator as part of the auction, but it is understood that a fifth potential bidder eventually withdrew from the sale process. The winning bidders meanwhile will be able to utilise their new spectrum from 1 January 2014, and the concessions are valid for a 15-year period.