The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has extended the deadline for the submission of bids and initial bid deposits for the upcoming auction of spectrum in the 3.5GHz band. The date has been pushed back from 24 November to 5pm on 29 November due to ‘the challenges posed to air travel as witnessed recently and considering that it may have some impact on intending bidders regarding the submission of their bids’.
The regulator plans to auction off two lots of 100MHz TDD spectrum in the 3.5GHz band, ranging from 3500MHz-3600MHz and 3700MHz-3800MHz, on 13 December. Each lot has a reserve price of USD197.4 million, with the nationwide spectrum licences valid for ten years. To qualify to bid in the auction, applicants will not have to be an existing licensed network operator in Nigeria, although any successful bidder which does not already have a Unified Access Service Licence (UASL) will be granted one upon payment of the specified fee. Winning bidders will be required to launch commercial services within twelve months of the effective date of the licence, and coverage should reach at least one state in each of the country’s six geo-political zones within two years.