The Austrian regulatory authority Telekom-Control Kommission (TKK) has published the documentation relating to a licensing procedure for three frequency rights of use in the 450MHz range.

The TKK considers that the frequency packages are ideal for the purpose of rolling out one or multiple (mobile) broadband network(s) in sparsely populated areas; the so-called “white spot areas”.

The list of municipalities to be covered (10,330) has been selected especially with that goal in mind.

The three frequency packages are as follows:

  • Package 1: 451,300-452,900; 461,300-462,900; 461,300-462,900
  • Package 2: 452,900-454,150; 462,900-464,150
  • Package 3: 454,150-455,740; 464,150-465,740

The minimum bids for the packages are:

  • Package 1: €125.000
  • Package 2: €100.000
  • Package 3: €125.000

Before the auction is initiated, a preliminary selection will take place.

Only those applicants that comply with § 55, 2,2 of the Austrian Telecommunications Act (TKG 2003) and which propose 'the most efficient use of the frequencies' will be allowed to the second round, in which financial bids will be evaluated, i.e. an auction.

 This means that only those entities will progress to the second round who can credibly demonstrate that they have the required technical and economic capabilities, the experience and expertise necessary to establish and operate a network. A business plan must be filed with the application.

In a second phase, the contenders that have passed the selection criteria will be judged on their bid in a First Price Sealed Bid auction procedure. The bid price must be submitted together with the application and cannot be changed after submission. Bids can be made for combined packages (e.g. a minimum €225,000 bid for packages 1 and 2 combined or a minimum €350,000 bid for packages 1,2 and 3 combined are allowed).

The above should be qualified by adding that existing GSM or UMTS operators can obtain one frequency package only (they can therefore not bid for combined packages). Other bidders can bid for all three packages, separately or combined.

The frequency licences to be granted will be valid until the year 2021.

Submissions for participation in the selection procedure must be filed with the Austrian regulatory authority by 27 February 2006, 12:00h.

The regulatory authority’s final decision is scheduled to be issued by the end of March 2006 (officially 14 days after the closing of the auction procedure).

For a detailed discussion, please contact Alexa Veller.