OTE, Vodafone, Wind Hellas secure spectrum in Greece

17 December 2020 | Melanie Mingas

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Greece has awarded 5G spectrum to three operators in an auction that raised US$453.78 million (€372.26 million).

OTE Group, Vodafone and Wind Hellas secured spectrum in the 700 MHz, 2 GHz, 3,400-3,800 MHz and 26 GHz bands. The frequencies had a combined total starting price of €367.3 million.

Vodafone reportedly spent €130 million on 14 blocks in the 3.4GHz to 3.8GHz range; two blocks of 700MHz; four blocks of 2GHz; and two blocks of 26GHz.

COSTMOTE – which also acquired two blocks of 700MHz; four blocks of 2GHz; and two blocks of 26GHz – secured an additional 15 blocks in the 3.4GHz to 3.8GHz range.

Wind Hellas spent €119 million securing 10 blocks from 4GHz to 3.8GHz; two at 700MHz; four at 2GHz; and one in the 26GHz band.

The Hellenic Telecommunications and Post Commission (EETT) stipulated that the licenses required providers to extend 5G services "for 60% of the population by the end of 2023, 94% over six years". Additionally, Greece's 42 "remote" regions must be served by at least one 5G service provider.

Spectrum applications opened in September and all three operators have previously confirmed their intentions to launch services in Q1 of next year.

Value of 5G

Assessing the future value of Greece’s 5G economy, a 2020 study by Accenture said the technology has the potential to increase GDP by $6.7 billion and create 46,000 jobs between 2022 and 2028.

As many as 52% of consumers surveyed by Accenture agreed on the importance of Greece being among the 5G adoption leaders in South East Europe.

In March, OTE's mobile business COSMOTE, enlisted Ericsson to deploy its 5G radio access network, as well as strengthen its existing networks nationwide.

Michael Tsamaz, OTE Group Chairman and CEO, said: "5G is the future of telecommunications and a necessary precondition for the Gigabit Society. It is the underlying technology which will be used by all the innovative applications that will change our lives in the near future.

"OTE Group creates the state-of-the-art infrastructure that our country and society need in the new digital era. We invest heavily to enable our customers to enjoy the innovative services and products brought by 5G. With technology and innovation, we create a better world for all," Tsamaz continued.