Belgium Gets a Potential New Entrant in the Mobile Market
The prospect of a fourth mobile network operator entering the Belgian mobile market became more likely. A potential new entrant applied for a package of the reserved spectrum and will possibly offer 5G services.
One of two new entrants the Belgian Institute for Postal Services and Telecommunications (BIPT) cleared to participate in a spectrum auction scheduled for June exercised an option to secure a 30MHz duplex block covering 2G, 3G, 4G, and 5G, paying more than €83.3 million, the regulator stated. The regulator deemed a total of five mobile players as admissible for the auction, without revealing any names. However, BIPT indirectly confirmed Proximus, Orange Belgium, and Telenet/Base are among the contenders by stating the three existing mobile operators also each paid €73 million to obtain the spectrum.
The identity of the new entrant was not disclosed, although Citymesh previously made clear its ambition to become the fourth player. The Belgian B2B services provider joined forces with IT company Cegeka in 2020 and already holds licenses in the 2.6GHz and 3.5GHz bands. It currently markets B2B mobile services under an MVNO agreement with Proximus. BIPT explained that in addition to the reserved spectrum, a total of 640MHz is being auctioned in June for a minimum amount of €477 million.