Cogeco spends $24 million in Canadian spectrum auction

21 May 2018 | Natalie Bannerman

Cogeco, the Canadian telco, has spent a total of $24 million for residual spectrum licences in the 700MHz, 2500MHz, 2300MHz and PCS-G bands.

As the top bidder Cogeco won 23 licences of 2300MHz – 2400MHz spectrum, Xplornet Communications spent $8.2 million for 16 licences in the 2500MHz range, Freedom Mobile spent roughly $8.6 million for 11 licences also in the 2500MHz range, Écotel brought $1.2 million worth of spectrum in the in 700MHz and 2500MHz range, Telus brought PCS band spectrum for $907,000 and Iris spent the least at $100,607 for spectrum in the 700MHz band.

Other participants were to include Canadian Natural Resources, the oil and gas company, and Rogers Communications, the communications and media company, which both withdrew its applications before the auction was due to take place.

In related news, Canada’s ministry of innovation, science and economic development (ISED) has announced that it will hold its spectrum auction for 600MHz band in 2019. Bidding is due to begin in March and potential bidders have until December of this year to submit their applications.

Under the terms of the framework published by the ISED, smaller mobile operators will be given further incentive to participate in the auction with 43% of the available spectrum being allocated for regional operators and new market entrants, allowing them to better compete with larger incumbents such as Bell, Telus and Rogers.

In a news release Navdeep Bains, minister of innovation, science and economic development, said: "Auctioning 600MHz spectrum will encourage competition, support new and emerging technologies, and enable Canadians to benefit from high-quality services at a better price."

Topics: Canada, Spectrum, Auction, Cogeco, Xplornet Communications, Freedom Mobile, Écotel, Telus, Iris