The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa commenced with the Opt-In Phase of the auction process in line with its commitment for the licensing of high demand spectrum today.
Bidders submitted their bids in person between 10h00 and 12h00 this morning; and the bids’ evaluation was carried out in front of all authorised representatives following the close of the bids’ submission window.
Even though there were four bidders who were eligible to bid, only three bidders submitted valid bids, namely Cell C, Rain Networks and Telkom. Rain Networks and Telkom have been hailed as the winners.
The Chairperson of ICASA Dr Keabetswe Modimoeng encourages those who were not able to make the cut not to lose hope but to continue supporting the process until the end.
“History has been made this morning and we are highly grateful to the participants during this phase. As stated in the Invitation To Apply, there can only be two winners this time around, and we encourage those who did not make it to continue supporting this process as it only meant to benefit the country and its citizens.”Dr Keabetswe Modimoeng, Chairperson, ICASA
Operators have been spectrum constrained for a long time and the Authority has complete faith in this licensing process in that this much needed stimulus output will translate into greater investment in broadband infrastructure and economic growth for the country.
“The licensing of this spectrum through an auction has major economic and social benefits for our country, especially during this time when the economy is emerging from the ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic. This process provides a critical stimulus for economic recovery and has the potential to stimulate employment by leveraging on ICT networks and digital platforms to deliver economic value for the South African society.”Dr Keabetswe Modimoeng, Chairperson, ICASA
The main auction stage will commence on Thursday, 10 March 2022 using an online auction platform. All six qualified bidders will be eligible to bid for spectrum in this stage between 09h00 and 17h00 during business days until the main auction stage concludes.
The Authority has also noted the latest developments in the review application filed by Telkom SOC Ltd. The Authority reaffirms its position that there is currently no legal impediment to the auction proceeding. As matters stand, Telkom itself is a participant in the process; and as per the outcomes of today, has emerged as a winning bidder in the Opt-In auction.
The Authority remains committed to successfully completing the auction and will strongly oppose all efforts aimed at undoing the economic and social gains arising from the process.