The Czech Telecommunication Office (CTU) has confirmed that seven interested parties are seeking to bid in the Czech Republic’s upcoming sale of 700MHz and 3400MHz-3600MHz 5G-ready spectrum.
The regulator is currently bound by the auction terms and the Electronic Communications Act not to reveal the names of the candidates, so it is unknown if the incumbent operators O2, T-Mobile and Vodafone have applied.
The three major players have attempted to halt the auction via legal action, but the CTU confirmed that the Prague courts had dismissed these challenges, saying: “all requests for the issuance of interim measures filed with the court in order to stop the selection process have already been rejected, and none of the operators has succeeded in its application at the Municipal Court in Prague.”
Reports by Reuters indicate that local firms Nordic Telecom and Sazka, which operates the MVNO SAZKAmobil, are interested in bidding. Meanwhile utilites firm CEZ has reportedly stated that it will not partake.
According to TeleGeography, the CTU’s tender for the 700MHz and 3400MHz–3600MHz spectrum is aimed at fostering competition in the market and thereby addressing the longstanding consumer – and indeed political - complaint that mobile tariffs are too high. To ensure new competitors are able to enter the market, the regulator has set aside a 2x10MHz block in the 700MHz band specifically for new entrants.