Telecommunications companies, Rain and Telkom are the first bidders in the Independent Telecommunications Authority of South Africa’s (ICASA) first round of spectrum auction this week.
Telkom purchased R1.5 billion, while Rain made a R1.1 billion purchase of high demand spectrum. Cell C, Telkom, Liquid Telecom, and Rain were the only mobile operators eligible for the first round of the auction.
The main bidding round – which is scheduled to take place on Thursday, is expected to attract mobile giants, MTN and Vodacom.
Independent Economist Thabi Leoka says, “Part of the auction is that the operators will be asked to give free broadband in rural areas. If you look at the unemployment numbers, and you look at the discouraged work seekers, that number has been increasing, I looked closer into the Western Cape.
In the Western Cape, many people have said that they are discouraged to look for work because the railway system doesn’t work and because railways are far cheaper than taxis. Now if you have spectrum, you don’t have to travel anywhere to start a business, you don’t have to travel anywhere to apply for a business, you can conduct your interview online.”
ICASA hereby provide outcomes of the Opt-In Auction phase that took place this morning. This phase is part of the ongoing auction process that’s in line with the Authority’s commitment to the licensing of high demand radio frequency spectrum. https://t.co/FVbtvaiqGA pic.twitter.com/RUzb1TztbO
— ICASA (@ICASA_org) March 8, 2022
The Authority has announced the names of the bidders that qualify to participate in the auction phase of the ongoing licensing process for the International Mobile Telecommunications (IMT) spectrum – also referred to as the high-demand spectrum. https://t.co/TVgDBhB2Ol pic.twitter.com/8Oth7pYrDQ
— ICASA (@ICASA_org) February 22, 2022