Indotel awards Claro, Orange 1700MHz/2100MHz, 900MHz frequencies

13 May 2014

Dominican telecoms watchdog the Instituto Dominicano de las Telecomunicaciones (Indotel) has awarded frequencies in the 900MHz and paired 1700MHz/2100MHz spectrum bands to domestic network operators Claro and Orange Dominicana, with its Decision 020-14. According to the document, Claro received Block C (2×5MHz in the 1735MHz-1740MHz/2135MHz-2140MHz band) and Block D (2×15MHz in the 1740MHz-1755MHz/2140MHz-2155MHz band), while Orange was awarded 1×19MHz in the 941MHz-960MHz band. The two cellcos paid a grand total of DOP3 billion (USD70.5 million) for the spectrum.

As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, Indotel resumed the long-delayed tender at the beginning of April 2014, with its Resolution 016/14; the regulator initially sought to make the frequencies available back in October 2011. The companies named as pre-qualified bidders were cellcos Claro, owned by America Movil (AM), Trilogy Dominicana (Viva), a subsidiary of US-based Trilogy International Partners, and Orange Dominicana, which was recently acquired by investment fund Altice Group of Luxembourg. In March 2014, however, Indotel was ordered by the country’s Administrative Court to halt the tender process as a precautionary measure, until a final judgement was made with regards to an appeal filed by local businessman Armando Bermudez, who claimed that his company – Color Vision – has been authorised to use the frequencies in the 2150MHz-2198MHz spectrum band since 1984. The claim was reportedly dismissed by the court.