Joao Rezende, the president of Brazil’s Agencia Nacional de Telecomunicacoes (Anatel), has confirmed that the government’s planned spectrum auction will include frequencies in the 1800MHz, 2.5GHz and 3.5GHz bands. Reuters Brasil reports that the tender, which will include ‘scraps’ of unsold spectrum, is now likely to take place in late October or early November. However, Rezende refused to rule out the possibility of including unsold 700MHz frequencies in the process, and will gauge their inclusion on the level of interest in the band.
Meanwhile, according to Jose Alexandre Bicalho, Anatel’s superintendent of planning and regulation, major players Oi, Claro, Vivo and TIM Brasil will all be excluded from the process on the grounds that they have already met their respective spectrum allocations.
As such, the market conditions seem designed to favour US telecoms giant AT&T Inc, which has been strongly linked with the Brazilian marketplace. AT&T – which is close to assuming a 93% stake in Sky Brazil, via its pending takeover of international satellite TV group DirecTV – is sending a pair of senior executives to Brazil this month, as the company ramps up its Latin American ambitions. The visit relates to Sky Brazil’s desire to expand its 2.5GHz networks into Rio de Janeiro, Recife and Sao Paulo, although it has also been suggested that the executives will be granted an audience with President Dilma Rousseff to discuss investment opportunities. Chief strategy officer John Stankey will join CEO Randall Stephenson on his trip to South America later this month.