Idea to shell out Rs 12,798 cr to buy spectrum

Friday, Oct 7, 2016,12:33 IST By Metrovaartha A A A

New Delhi | Telecom operator Idea Cellular will shell out Rs 12,798 crore for buying 349.20 MHz of spectrum in the just concluded auctions.

Idea has successfully completed its pan-India mobile broadband footprint and significantly boosted its capacity spectrum portfolio, as it prepares itself for the upcoming digital age, Idea Cellular said in a statement.

“With an aggregate spectrum holding of over 890 MHz (in 4G technology bands) including acquisition in the current auction of 349.20 MHz, Idea has filled all of its spectrum coverage requirements, while procuring a substantial part of its broadband capacity needs for the next decade,” Idea Cellular Chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla said.

The company will now focus on expanding its wireless broadband presence, primarily on 4G LTE technology to over a billion Indians, he added.

Idea has acquired additional spectrum in 1800 MHz and 2100 MHz bands as well as 2300 MHz and 2500 MHz bands. The company is now “well-equipped” to offer 4G services on its own spectrum across 20 circles — Uttar Pradesh (West), UP (East), Gujarat, Bihar and Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Mumbai, West Bengal, Assam and Jammu and Kashmir.

Additionally, Idea has also procured 3G spectrum in Bihar and Rajasthan extending its capability to offer 3G services to 15 service areas.

Himanshu Kapania, Managing Director of Idea Cellular said the company had been prudent in its spectrum acquisition with less than 1 per cent premium being paid over the DoT set reserve price.

This will enable Idea to complete its mobile broadband footprint across all 22 telecom circles in the country and also arms it with substantial capacity to meet data requiirements of its growing base of over 180 million customers.