Indonesian operator Smartfren will continue the operations of mobile internet provider Bolt following the cancellation of its spectrum licence by the country’s government.
Last week, the Indonesian Communications and Information Ministry took the decision to terminate the 2.3GHz spectrum licences held by Bolt Internux and its parent firm First Media.
The companies obtained the spectrum at auction in 2009 but have not paid fees for over two years, and collectively owe the government more than IDR709 billion ($49 million) in spectrum charges.
Providing internet services as Bolt, the companies had a combined 4G user base of around 3 million at the end of 2018.
The Jakarta Post quoted Smartfren deputy CEO Djoko Tata Ibrahim as saying: “We have made this agreement as part of our support for Bolt customers. Its customers are now able to replace their 4G cards to our Smartfren Now+ prepaid SIM cards for free.”
The operator is one of the smallest in Indonesia, with a market share of less than 5%, so Bolt’s connections could provide it with a boost to its base.