Canadian 3500MHz auction beats previous spend record, preliminary reports say

15 Jul 2021

Canada’s ongoing 3500MHz 5G licence auction is expected to raise up to CAD8 billion (USD6.4 billion), according to sources cited by The Globe & Mail. Over 20 applicants have been bidding on 1,500 spectrum licences within 172 geographical blocks since 15 June, and the sources indicated that the auction is currently in the assignment phase and is expected to be completed by 23 July.

If preliminary reports are accurate, the 3500MHz proceeds would be a record amount for a Canadian wireless spectrum sale. TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database says that the existing record is CAD5.27 billion achieved in February 2014’s 700MHz licence auction, which surpassed the CAD4.25 billion earned by the federal government via the AWS-1 (1700MHz) auction of July 2008.