No Summa of love for telco; court of appeals over-rules 4G decision

27 Sep 2012

According to the Prime-Tass business news agency, Russia’s Ninth Arbitration Court of Appeals has cancelled a lower court’s 12 July decision to allow Summa Telecom to re-farm 2.5GHz-2.7GHz spectrum previously assigned for WiMAX use for Long Term Evolution (LTE). Summa Telecom, part of tycoon Ziyavudin Magomedov’s Summa Group, was granted the frequencies in 2006, but its stuttering plans were rendered moot in October 2010 when the State Radio Frequency Commission (SRFC) announced it was to repeat its 2006 tenders for the frequencies. The licences, which chiefly applied to Siberia and the Far-East region, were ostensibly cancelled when the operator complained about the lengthy delay in receiving its spectrum.

In July this year it was reported that a 70MHz block of the original frequency allocation, which is now held by emergent WiMAX-turned-LTE operator Scartel (Yota), could belatedly revert to Summa, although the reasoning behind the legal decision was never disclosed. Summa ended up empty-handed following the conclusion of Roskomnadzor’s recent 800MHz spectrum auction, prompting it to return its attention towards the frequencies in the 2.5GHz-2.7GHz band.

Russia, Sumtel (owned by Rostelecom)