Dutch 5G Auction Raises €1.2 Billion
Dutch operators spent €1.2 billion in first 5G auction in the Netherlands. KPN and T-Mobile Netherlands were poised to join rival VodafoneZiggo in offering services on the new network technology.
KPN and VodafoneZiggo revealed they spent €416 million apiece and were both satisfied with the result. T-Mobile splashed €400 million and, although also pleased with its allocation, complained the starting price set by the government had been too high. KPN and VodafoneZiggo were both allocated 20MHz of 700MHz; 15MHz of 1400MHz; and 40MHz in the 2100MHz band.
VodafoneZiggo, which launched 5G in April using its existing spectrum assets, noted the allocation would enhance its current offer, while KPN said it planned to immediately increase mobile data speeds for its 4G customers in addition to a next-generation launch. KPN CEO Joost Farwerck added it had acquired an attractive combination of frequency licences at a reasonable price, considering the minimum price set by the government.
T-Mobile won 20MHz of 700MHz and 10MHz in the 1400 MHz band. It also retained 40MHz of 2100MHz already held. Although the operator bemoaned the high starting price, it noted it paid a considerable amount, but considerably less than the competition. The operator plans to launch 5G services as soon as the licences are received, while KPN said its network was soon to launch.
As part of the terms of the auction, the operators have been set a number of conditions, including covering 98 percent of each municipality, along with minimum speed requirements for businesses and consumers. All licences are valid until 2041. A second Dutch 5G auction is planned for early 2022.