TKK unveils ‘combinatory clock auction’, T-Mobile forced to hire theoretician to understand rules

19 Mar 2013

Austria’s Telekom Control Commission (TKK) will hold its largest auction of radio frequencies to date in September 2013, with a total of 28 spectrum blocks in the 800MHz, 900MHz and 1800MHz bands going under the hammer. Minimum bids for the entire spectrum allocation will generate around EUR526 million (USD680 million). The auction was originally scheduled to take place in 2012, but was delayed due to the long-running takeover of Orange Austria by Hong Kong’s Hutchison Whampoa, which was completed in January this year. With reference to the complex nature of the auction, the TKK explains: ‘Since the multi-band auction is the largest allocation of frequencies that has ever taken place in Austria, companies must develop a variety of scenarios, in order to calculate the economic value of the spectrum for their companies to provide their expert teams and their strategy for the auction’.

Reuters reports that the overly complicated rules of the auction have been poorly received by the country’s mobile operators, and notes that T-Mobile Austria has hired a game theoretician to assist with its preparations during the six-month build-up to the auction.