Four win in German 5G auction

All four of the bidders in Germany’s 5G spectrum auction have been awarded spectrum blocks.

After 497 rounds of bidding over 52 days, four telecommunications players have jointly been a total of 420MHz by Germany’s Federal Network Agency in the country’s 5G auction.

The results were as follows:

Company 2GHz Band 3.6GHz Band Total Price
Telekom Deutschland 2 X 20 MHz

€851.5 million (£757m US$963m)

90 MHz

€1.323 billion (£1.1bn US$1.4bn)

€2.174 billion

(£1.9bn US$2.4bn)

Vodafone 2 x 20 MHz

€806.5 million (£717m US$912m)

90 MHz

€1.073 billion (£954m US$1.2bn)

€1.879 billion

(£1.6bn US$2.1bn)

Telefónica 2 x 10 MHz

€381.1 million (£339m US$431m)

70 MHz

€1.043 billion (£928m US$1.1bn)

€1.424 billion

(£1.2bn US$1.6bn)

Drillisch Netz 2 x 10 MHz

€334.9 million (£297m US$378m)

50 MHz

€735.1 million (£654m US$831m)

€1.07 billion

(£952m US$1.2bn)

Pre-qualifications for the auction opened in late November 2018, with the four bidders being shortlisted in February this year [2019].

Overall, the auction will bring in over €6.5 billion (£5.7bn US$7.3bn) for the government, which will in turn use it to upgrade its network infrastructure.

The process has been criticised, however, for its high prices relative to other countries. “The network rollout in Germany has suffered a significant setback. The price could have been much lower,” said Dirk Wossner, a member of Telekom’s board, in a statement.

He added: “Once again, the spectrum in Germany is much more expensive than in other countries. Network operators now lack the money to expand their networks.”

For Telefónica’s part, the company said it would get one of its 2GHz blocks allocated on I January 2021, with the other one allocated on 1 January 2026. As for 3.6GHz blocks, Telefónica said they would be progressively allocated until 2022.

The contracts will be in effect until 2040.


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