TPG wins auction to be Singapore's fourth cellco

15 Dec 2016

Australian fixed line operator TPG Telecom has won the new entrant spectrum auction to become Singapore's fourth mobile network operator.

TPG submitted the winning bid of S$105 million ($72.8 million) for a provisional allocation of 60 MHz of spectrum in the 900-MHz and 2.3-GHz spectrum bands.

TPG outbid MyRepublic to secure the new license and spectrum.

Final allocation of the spectrum will require payment of the relevant spectrum fees, and the commencement date of spectrum rights will be scheduled after the planned general spectrum auction to be held in the first quarter.

Regulator IMDA said the new spectrum rights are expected to commence on April 1 at the earliest. TPG will also be eligible to compete in the general spectrum auction if the operator so chooses.

As a condition of its bid, TPG will need to provide nationwide street level 4G coverage within 18 months of the new spectrum rights commencing, road tunnels and in-building coverage within 30 months and coverage of MRT underground stations and lines within 54 months.

Singapore MVNO Circles.Life, which launched earlier this year as the market's fourth postpaid mobile service provider, has welcomed the move.

Circles.Life welcomes IMDA’s on-going efforts to support competition and look forward to TPG Telecom’s entry into the telco space in Singapore... We hope TPG Telecom will continue to support our ambition to bring more innovation and choice to the market,” the company's co-founder and director Rameez Ansar said.

“In the short-term, the impact may be limited until TPG Telecom enters the market in about two years from now after building the required infrastructure. Meanwhile, we are focusing on targeting the data savvy segment.”

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