UK telecoms regulator Ofcom has confirmed that its auction of spectrum in the 700MHz and 3.6GHz-3.8GHz bands has moved to the ‘negotiation period’, following its announcement of the results of the sale’s principal stage last week. In a press release regarding the matter the watchdog noted that, with the first stage of the auction having outlined how much spectrum each winning bidder had secured and how much they would pay for it, bidding in the assignment stage – in which companies vie for their preferred frequency positions – has also now been concluded.
Following these first two stages, winners of spectrum in the 3.6GHz-3.8GHz band have confirmed that they wish to go ahead with the negotiation period; in this, bidders will have the opportunity to negotiate frequency positions among themselves, in order to facilitate trades to join together their new spectrum holdings with existing holdings in the wider 3.4GHz-3.8GHz band. According to Ofcom, the first phase of the negotiation period started yesterday (25 March) and will end on 16 April. Should a second phase be required, this would then take place between 19 April and 23 April. Ofcom has, meanwhile, confirmed it will publish the full results of the auction once all stages of the sale process have been completed.