Spain to auction 2.6GHz/3.5GHz spectrum in January 2016

11 Dec 2015

Spanish authorities are set to launch a sale of spectrum in the 2.6GHz and 3.5GHz bands in January 2016, with winning bidders expected to be named in March, according to local news source Expansion.

Amongst the frequencies to be auctioned is a 2×10MHz block in the 2.6GHz band which was previously owned by ONO – the cableco’s now owner Vodafone Spain had been required to give up the frequencies to ensure it remained within the legal limit for spectrum ownership. The report notes that frequencies offered in the 2.6GHz band will also include those which went unsold in previous auctions. With the starting price for the spectrum having been set at EUR5 million (USD5.5 million), it is said to cover around 27 million people, or approximately 58% of the population, with locations including: Aragon, Cantabria, Castilla y Leon, Cataluna, Ceuta, Extremadura, La Rioja, Navarra, Madrid, Melilla, Murcia and Valencia.

Meanwhile, a 20MHz block of spectrum will be offered in the 3.5GHz band – currently being used to provide fixed-wireless broadband services – offering nationwide coverage.

According to the report, Yoigo and MasMovil are among the likely bidders for the spectrum when it is offered, while Movistar, Vodafone Spain and Orange Espana will all be unable to bid due to having reached spectrum holding caps.

Spain, Grupo Corporativo ONO, Ministerio de Industria, Energia y Turismo, National Commission for Markets and Competition (CNMC), Vodafone Spain