Marathon Canadian spectrum auction finally wraps up

Chris Ziegler
C. Ziegler|07.22.08

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Marathon Canadian spectrum auction finally wraps up
Holy cow, we're actually out of breath just thinking about how long it's been since Canada kicked this off. After running some two months and hauling in nearly three times as much cash as had been widely predicted -- $4.2 billion in Canadian currency, to be exact -- the Great White North's AWS auction has drawn to a close, and it looks like there's going to be some new competition in the mix whether Rogers, Bell, and Telus like it or not. The most prolific bidder has turned out to be Globalive, which runs the Yak brand and made off with licenses pretty much everywhere except Quebec at the cost of some $442 million CAD; several other new players came to bat for some licenses as well, and naturally, the big three incumbents took the opportunity to snap up some extra spectrum -- Rogers to the tune of nearly one billion dollars. It'll probably be a year or two before any of the rookies have service to offer, though they're helped out by new regulations that require existing networks to lease space on towers for new transceivers and offer roaming rates that aren't prohibitively high.

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