Reliance Jio

Spectrum Auction: Reliance Jio Buys Airwaves Across 22 Circles

In the spectrum auction which has now been concluded, Reliance Jio have bought auction across all 22 circles in the country. The recent purchases have raised the stake of Reliance Jio has increased by 55% to 1,717 MHz across all circles.

Details of Reliance Jio’s Spectrum Auction Purchases

The Mukesh Ambani-owned telecom operator has bought spectrum across 3 bands – 800 MHz, 1,800 MHz and 2,300 MHz. In total, they have bought 133.75 MHz of frequencies in the 800 MHz band, 74.60 MHz in 1,800 MHz band and 280 MHz in 2,300 MHz spectrum band.

Reliance Jio now have a very well balanced spectrum across all the circles for 4G service. Notably, going into this auction it was the company with the fewest frequencies to its name. Although this is an expected spending spree from Jio as they already submitted the most earnest money. Furthermore, the teleco was also able to renew all spectrum which were up for renewal in 2021.

Some key takeaways from the purchase are:

  1. Reliance Jio now has achieved complete spectrum de-risking, with average life of owned spectrum of
    15.5 years. De-risking means having spectrum which is not up for renewal any time soon.
  2. In spite of having the most financial muscle, its spectrum was acquired in the most cost efficient manner. That is, the effective cost was Rs 60.8 crore per MHz.
  3. As discussed before, the teleco’s total owned spectrum footprint has increased significantly, by 55%, to 1,717 MHz.
  4. With this acquisition, Reliance Jio has the highest amount of sub-GHz spectrum with 2X10 MHz contiguous spectrum in most circles. It also has at least 2X10 MHz in 1800 MHz band and 40 MHz in 2300 MHz band in each of the 22 circles.

Mukesh Ambani, Chairman at RIL, quoted that Jio has “revolutionized digital landscape of India with the country becoming the fastest adopter of Digital Life”. Calling back to his earlier commitment of brining India out of the 2G era, he said that Jio was also “getting ready for the imminent 5G rollout”.

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