Monday, November 5, 2012

Videocon pulls out of CDMA spectrum bid

 Videocon has withdrawn its application to participate in the CDMA spectrum auctions, executives with direct knowledge of the development confirmed. Last month, it was the only company to submit bids for GSM and CDMA airwaves sale. 

This leaves Tata Teleservices as the only participant in the CDMA sale and that too in just three circles. 

Videocon's exit may force the telecom department to do away with the CDMA spectrum auctions and will also reduce the government's estimates of garnering more than 45,000 crore from the upcoming 2G airwaves sale. 
The spectrum auctions, scheduled to begin on November 12, will be held in two parts. First companies will have to bid for airwaves in the 1800 MHz band largely used for GSM-based mobile services. CDMA spectrum auctions in the 800 MHz band are scheduled to begin two days after close of the 1800 MHz band. 

In addition to Videocon, other mobile operators taking part in the GSM sale process includeBharti Airtel, Idea Cellular, Vodafone and Telenor. The auctions are being held after the Supreme Court in its February 2 verdict quashed 122 permits issued by former telecoms minister A Raja and directed that these licences be reallocated through a bidding process. 

ET had reported earlier that industry executives shared the view that Reliance Industries, which is not taking part in the airwaves sale, would buy out Videocon's permits after the auctions. Reliance had followed a similar strategy when it bought a 95% stake from the HFCL Group inInfotel, the only company to win pan-India 4G airwaves in the broadband wireless (4G) auctions of 2010.

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