Chilean 5G tender attracts five bidders including newcomer

Chilean 5G tender attracts five bidders, including newcomer

Five firms have lodged bids through Chile’s Department of Telecommunications (Subsecretaria de Telecomunicaciones, Subtel) for the country’s upcoming public tender of 5G spectrum.

The country’s Ministry of Transport and Telecommunications (MTT) is auctioning four separate frequency bands as part of the tender, with spectrum available in the 700MHz, 1700MHz (AWS), 3.5GHz and 26GHz bands.

Chile’s four main mobile providers have all submitted offers on holdings in at least one of the available bands, with newcomer Borealnet joining the fray by bidding on spectrum in all but the 26GHz bands. The player is a consortium of US-based Rivada Networks and Business Finland, and according to CommsUpdate is looking to set itself up in Chile as a wholesale provider.

The sole available 2x10MHz block of 700MHz spectrum attracted bids from Boreal and WOM. These two players also bid on the 1700MHz band, where they faced competition from Claro. Meanwhile the 26GHz band saw bids from Claro, Entel and WOM.

The 3.5GHz band saw the most interest, attracting bids from all five parties – including Movistar, a surprise given that the operator is seeking to prevent the tender for antitrust reasons. Movistar argues that some operators benefit from the structure of the tenders to the detriment of their competitors. While Chile’s Antitrust Tribunal dimissed the case earlier this month, Movistar has stated that it will pursue the challenge via the Supreme Court.

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