Spectrum auction Day 4: Demand stabilises for 900 Mhz, fight shifts to 1,800 Mhz

Written by fe Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Feb 7 2014, 14:17pm hrs
AuctionClosing bid price on Thursday stood at Rs 52,664 cr, up 4% from Wednesday's closing amount for auctions. Express
Day four of the 2G auctions saw demand stabilising for the efficient 900 Mhz spectrum and the fight shifting to the 1,800 Mhz band. Of the 22 circles where 1,800 Mhz band spectrum is up for grabs, high bids were seen for Assam, Gujarat, Bihar and Maharashtra circles where the base price is not high and operators expect long-term revenue growth.

The closing bid price on Thursday stood at R52,664 crore, up 4% from Wednesday's closing amount.

Kapil Sibal, telecom minister, said the auction has been a success from the revenue perspective and the sector will soon return to good times. Will be happy if effort is translated into quality services (by operators), he added.

At the end of day four, the bids had gone up to Rs 21,935 crore for the three metros Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata in the 900 Mhz band, which is around 5% up from Wednesday's close. Delhi saw a huge 78% increase from the reserve price while Mumbai and Kolkata did not see any price increase on Thursday.

In the 1,800 Mhz band, all the 22 circles put up for sale got bids to the tune of R30,729 crore, up 2.39% from Wednesday's close. A total of 28 bidding rounds have been conducted in this round of auctions.

Participation in the 1,800 Mhz band improved remarkably with Assam, Madhya Pradesh, UP (E), UP (W) and J&K circles getting higher demand than the spectrum blocks available in these circles. While the bid price at the end of day four for Assam was 79% higher than the reserve price, Bihar saw its bid price increase by 14% over the base price and Gujarat bids went 39% higher than reserve price. Other circles, including Delhi, J&K, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, and UP (West), also saw the bid price exceeding the reserve price at close of day four. In all other circles, the bid price remained at the base price level.