Taiwan raises $4b in 4G auction

Fiona Chau
31 Oct 2013

Taiwan concluded its 40-day long 4G auction yesterday, with six companies paying a combined of NT$118.65 billion ($4 billion) for 270 MHz of LTE spectrum.

The total bid for the spectrum in the 700-MHz, 900-MHz and 1800-MHz frequency bands was significantly higher than the floor price of NT$35.9 billion set by the National Communications Commission, the regulator announced Wednesday.

It is in line with forecasts by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, which has projected that the auction will raise two or three times the NCC’s reserve price.

The total bidding price for the 1800-MHz band was NT$78.785 billion while the 700-MHz band was NT$35.2 billion and the 900-MHz band was NT$9.345 billion.

Among the winners, incumbent carrier Chunghwa Telecom was the biggest spender, paying nearly NT$39.1 billion on spectrum in both 900-MHz and 1800-MHz bands.

Following suit was Far EasTone and Taiwan Mobile, which spent over NT$31 billion and over NT$29 billion respectively for airwaves in both the 700-MHz and 1800-MHz bands.

The other three spectrum winners are Asia Pacific Telecom and Star Mobile Telecommunications, and Hon Hai affiliate Ambit Microsystems, which also secured spectrum in the 700-MHz and the least attractive 900-MHz bands, according to NCC.

The NCC commenced the 4G auction on September 3, with seven companies participating in an open-bid competition for the LTE spectrum, but Taiwanese conglomerate Shinkong Group dropped out on the sixth day of the auction.

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