HOME > BUSINESS > Vodafone, Idea, Reliance Jio, Telenor and Bharti likely to buy 4G waves in auction – CS

Vodafone, Idea, Reliance Jio, Telenor and Bharti likely to buy 4G waves in auction – CS

spectrumBroker Credit Suisse sees all the major telecom companies of India making an attempt to buy fresh 4G spectrum in the upcoming auctions expected to take place in March.

Despite making contrary noises, the telcos are likely to buy airwaves as it is a ‘once-in-20-years’ opportunity, the broker said in a note to clients.

According to its estimates, Vodafone and Telenor are seen as the most in need of such buys, followed by Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular.

Even though the three top holders of 4G spectrum — RJio, Airtel and Idea — have opposed selling more 4G suitable spectrum in the 700 MHz band, Credit Suisse expects all of them to eventually participate in the upcoming auctions going by precedent.

“..even before the March 2015 auctions, the industry did issue various statements warning of weak demand in auctions. Even our own expectation was that the 800/2100 MHz spectrum auctions would fail to see any bidders in 2015. The eventual behaviour of the industry in the auctions took everyone by surprise.”

At the same time, cautioned the analysts, only part of the spectrum is likely to be sold.

They felt that Norway-based Telenor is likely to make a bid for 4G airwaves in an attempt to boost its data offerings.

“In September 2015, Uninor rebranded itself as Telenor and has indicated that it will focus on data through 4G… These auctions could provide Telenor an opportunity to enter the LTE race—either through 2100 Mhz or even 700 Mhz bands. This is also visible in its reply to the consultation paper where it is in favour of conducting the 700 auctions,” said the note.

Vodafone, on the other hand, could end up purchasing both 2100 MHz spectrum (suitable for both 3G and 4G) and 2300 MHz (suitable for 4G). Despite being second only to Bharti in terms of revenue, the operator ranks fifth in India in terms of access to 4G-suitable spectrum.

Vodafone at present has 4G spectrum in only five circles– Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Karnataka and Kerala.

“This auction would be an ideal platform for Vodafone to complete the LTE footprint. Further, similar to Idea, Vodafone could try to complete its 3G footprint on 2100 band in the remaining seven circles.”

In case of Idea Cellular — the third biggest operator in the country, it said: “Given the late start, and the recent sprint by Idea to launch LTE services, we can safely assume that Idea would be keen to complete pan-India LTE foot-print.”

Credit Suisse analysts also felt that the Aditya Birla Group company could also try to buy 2100 MHz spectrum in the ten circles where it doesn’t have its own 3G networks. (We, however, believe it is unlikely to try that due to leverage concerns and is likely to focus only on 4G.)

India’s biggest telecom operator, Bharti Airtel, already has near pan-India 3G spectrum and 4G spectrum in 15 out of the 22 zones. “As a priority, Bharti would likely try to fill the gaps in its 3G/4G coverage.” It is also likely to bridge the spectrum deficit it has with RJio by completing its pan-India footprint on 2300 MHz band by buying spectrum in the 13 circles where it doesn’t already own it, the note said.

The only player that doesn’t need to buy new spectrum in the upcoming auction is Reliance Jio, as it has pan-India 4G spectrum, and a lot of it at that. However, it too may end up opening its purse strings, the broker felt.

“RJio would likely try getting more sub-1GHz spectrum in these auctions,” pointing towards the 700 MHz band.

JIO ALREADY BIGGER THAN IDEA, VODAFONE

The analysts also said that Reliance Jio has overtaken both Idea Cellular and Vodafone in terms of having the biggest network in India, even before starting commercial operations.

“Accounting for technology efficiency, RJio has the second largest network capacity nationwide,” it said.

The average 4G spectrum holding of Jio is over 15 Mhz per circle, which is the highest in the industry by a large margin. Airtel has only around half of that.

Bharti, however, continues to have the highest capacity in India due to its substantial 3G and 2G holdings, which RJio doesn’t have.

Surprisingly, in terms of 3G+4G spectrum capacity, Idea has an average of around 10 MHz per circle, higher than Vodafone’s average by almost 2 MHz according to analysts’ estimates.

Follow ULTRA.news
Why no Jiocoin can ever take on Bitcoin Every few months, there is a new rumor surrounding Reliance Jio, the 4G operator that has taken the country by storm. A year ago, it was Jio DTH, which was supposed to put other DTH operators out of business, and now, it's Jiocoin, which is supposed to put virtual currencies l...
Idea-Vodafone merger gets NCLT approval The proposed merger between Idea Cellular and Vodafone got the approval of India's National Company Law Tribunal, with the rider that the merged entity will be liable to pay income tax on behalf of Vodafone India in case of a ruling that Vodafone India has to pay the arrears. ...
Reliance Jio unveils 3GB, 5GB daily packs at Rs 509, 799 New Plans After disrupting the market with its 1GB per day plans, Reliance Jio has unveiled new packs targeted at heavy users. Two new plans have been unveiled today that were not present on the company's website earlier -- a 3GB per day plan priced at Rs 509 and a 5GB dai...
Tata DoCoMo offers 1GB daily + free calls at Rs 179 with Airtel 3G Tata DoCoMo, which recently announced that it was moving its customers to Bharti Airtel's network before a merger of the two companies, has started offering unlimited calls and daily data. Even though users won't be able to latch on to Bharti Airtel's 4G network, they can use ...
Reliance Jio unveils 8 new plans, data price falls 32% Reliance Jio has unveiled eight new plans that have brought down the price of 4G data by 32% to Rs 3.56 per GB from Rs 5.19 per GB earlier. The new plans are available from Tuesday and will make most of the the company's existing plans irrelevant (see table below). The new ...
Jio Impact: 4G overtakes 2G in network size in India A single tower often hosts multiple tenants Reliance Jio, the telecom arm of Reliance Industries, has achieved what was considered impossible barely 18 months ago: India now has more 4G base stations than 2G base stations. In other words, 4G service providers in India have...
Vodafone offers Rs 1,500 cashback on Samsung Galaxy J series Galaxy J7 Max Vodafone announced cashback of Rs 1,500 on Samsung handsets Galaxy J2 Pro, Galaxy J7 Nxt and Galaxy J7 Max. Vodafone customers, both existing and new, can purchase any of the popular Samsung 4G smartphones, it said. To avail this special offer, prepaid cus...
Aditya Birla Group to invest Rs 3,250 cr into Idea before merger An Idea promotion Idea Cellular said its board of directors have approved the issuance of 32.66 cr shares of the company to its promoter Aditya Birla Group at a price of Rs 99.50 each. The total infusion will be to the extent of Rs 3,250 cr. It also said it plans to rai...
TRAI: India data price rises 22% in Q3; 4G accounts for 80% of data use When Mukesh Ambani launched his telecom venture a year ago, it was based on one key assumption: India is a data starved country, and given the right pricing, demand for the commodity is almost insatiable. Going by the latest industry data from the Telecom Regulatory Authority ...
RCom confirms sale of telecom assets to Reliance Jio An RCom exhibition stall Reliance Jio, the firm led by Mukesh Ambani, will walk away with most of the telecom assets of Reliance Communications, led by Mukesh's brother Anil. Rcom said it has "signed definitive binding agreements with Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited for sale...
Inter-ministerial group on telecom woes dismissed crisis theory, blamed telcos for high debt The problem of high debt levels faced by some telecom companies in India was of their own making and the government had a limited to role to play in resolving the same, the inter-ministerial group set up to address the concerns of telecom sector found. The cash flow issues fa...
Govt committed to concept of net neutrality – Manoj Sinha TRAI Chairman RS Sharma Telecom minister Manoj Sinha today said the government is committed to the "the fundamental principles and concept of net neutrality" and is studying the recommendations of the telecom regulator in this regard. The government is keen to ensure "non-...
Airtel, Idea & Vodafone to unveil 1GB/day pack at Rs 199 With Reliance Jio unveiling its first monthly tariff plans, all eyes are now on the incumbents -- Bharti Airtel, Idea Cellular and Vodafone -- to see how they will respond. Industry sources believe that the three operators will unveil a new 199 plan which gives 1 GB of data per d...
Reliance Jio launches monthly plans 199 & 299 with 1.2 & 2 GB per day As expected, Reliance Jio has launched its first monthly plans -- Rs 199 for 1.2 GB per day and Rs 299 for 2 GB per day. The plans were anticipated after the newcomer unveiled its permanent plans on Diwali -- more than a month ago. The plans price data at roughly the same ...
BSNL, Reliance Jio testing network tie-up – Minister State-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd is currently testing an intra-circle roaming agreement with Reliance Jio in Karnataka circle, telecom minister Manoj Sinha said. However, he did not clarify whether the agreement was to allow BSNL users to tap into Reliance Jio's 4G service...
Tata Teleservices shareholders to get 1 Bharti Airtel share for 2014 held Shareholders of Tata Teleservices Maharashtra Ltd -- the listed unit of Tata Tele -- will get one share of Bharti Airtel for every 2,014 shares held by them, the company said. The ratio of share issue indicates that the consumer mobile business of Tata Telservices Maharashtra...
Vodafone offers Rs 2,100 cashback on Rs 3,700 itel A20 smartphone Vodafone India announced a cash back deal on itel's A20 4G smartphone. Under the scheme, anyone who buys the mobile phone for Rs 3,690 will get a cashback of Rs 900 after 1.5 years and Rs 1,200 after another 1.5 years. However, the person has to use the specified Vodafone ...
Bharti Airtel buys Tigo Rwanda from Millicom International Bharti Airtel Limited said it has agreed to acquire 100% of Tigo Rwanda Limited, the local unit of Millicom International Cellular S.A.. Airtel already has operations in Rwanda and the acquisition "will consolidate the Rwandan telecom market and position Airtel as a strong nu...
JioTV now available on PC as well JioTV, the IPTV service from Reliance Jio is now available on the open Internet as well. JioTV website Live TV channels can be watched by anyone on their PC using a Jio ID and an Internet connection. The Jio ID, however, can be set only by using a Jio phone number and ...
PREMIUM NO MORE? Idea Cellular matches Reliance Jio’s 399 plan Hit by a loss of subscribers, Idea Cellular seems to be having second thoughts about its strategy of always pricing its packs above those of Reliance Jio. Idea offer The mobile operator has now slashed the price of its 70-day unlimited pack to Rs 398 from Rs 448 earlier fo...