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On the very first day of the 2G auctions of 2014, demand for spectrum in the 1800 MHz band was low: there was no excess demand for spectrum at the end of the very first day itself for all circles but Gujarat at the end of Round 7 of the auction. Things weren’t particularly better for 900 MHz band either, as only Mumbai reported excess demand at the end of the first day in this band. No excess demand indicates that in case of many circles, bids for blocks of spectrum were lower than total blocks available: some telecom operators decided not to bid for spectrum in some circles during this round. Please note that this is, by no means, indicative of the activity in the following rounds. Bidding strategy will change with each round. When activity requirement from a telco is increased to 100%, bidding will be compulsory.

CricketHere’s the lowdown from Day 1:

900 MHz
– For round 8, the price of spectrum in Mumbai is being increased by Rs 23.66 crore, due to excess demand
– There was no excess demand for spectrum in Delhi at the end of round 7, but there wasn’t deficient demand either. Price per block in Delhi is being increased to by Rs 4.28 crore.
– Price of spectrum in Mumbai increased by 44.28% above its base price, at Rs 473.24 crore, it is Rs 145 crore, as compared to the reserve price of Rs 328 crore. Mumbai had a lower reserve price than Delhi.
– Price of spectrum in Delhi was up 19.14%: at Rs 428.92 crore, it was Rs 68.9 crore higher than the reserve price of Rs 360 crore.
– Price of spectrum in Kolkata was up 38.23%: at Rs 173.16 crore, it was Rs 48.2 crore higher than the reserve price of Rs 125 crore.

1800 MHz
– For round 8, price is being increased for Gujarat by Rs 0.89 crore per block, due to excess demand. For the rest of the circles, there was no excess demand.
– Price in 5 Circles increased beyond the reserve price: Gujarat, Jammu & Kashmir, Bihar, UP (East), UP (West) and West Bengal. Price in 17 circles remained at the reserve price.
– Price in Gujarat increased the most in absolute terms: by Rs 1.1 crore per block to Rs 29.74 crore
– Price in Bihar increased the most in percentage terms: by 7.97% to Rs 7.99 crore
– At the end of round 7, Tamil Nadu saw the lowest demand for spectrum, followed by Orissa and Haryana.

2g-auction-day-1

Different publications are reporting different numbers, in terms of potential revenue for the government at the end of the last round: ET reports that bids for spectrum in 900 Mhz band were worth over Rs 16,000 crore, and for that in 1800 Mhz band were about Rs 23,000 crore. Moneycontrol is reporting Rs 13,000 crores. Mint is reporting Rs 9200 crore.

As per MediaNama’s calculations (provisional winning price x number of blocks bid for), the bids would amount to Rs 19051.84 crore in the 900 MHz band, and Rs 25559.77 in the 1800 MHz band. That’s a total of Rs 44611.61 crore bid for at the end of round 7.

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Earlier, the Department of telecom reduced the amount of spectrum being put to auction in the 1800MHz band in 10 of 22 circles, perhaps in the hope that scarcity might help increase demand. The total amount of spectrum available in Bihar, Delhi, Jammu & Kashmir, Kolkata, Mumbai, North East, Orissa, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh (East) and West Bengal was reduced. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court of India has rejected a plea from Airtel, Vodafone and Idea Cellular plea to cancel or postpone the auctions in the 900MHz band, in an urgent special hearing yesterday, reports The Economic Times. It has also refused to extend their 20-year telecom licenses which are expiring in November 2014, and rejected the telcos’ offer to surrender 3.8 MHz of their 10 MHz spectrum while retaining the remaining 6.2MHz spectrum.

Our 2G Auctions 2014 coverage

– Vodafone Seeks 1% Uniform Spectrum Usage Charges For 3G & BWA Spectrum
– 5% Spectrum Usage Fee For New Spectrum in 2014 2G Auctions Pre-Qualified Bidders
– 2014 2G Auctions: 8 Telcos Submit Bids; Videocon, Loop & SSTL Not Participating
– DoT Modifies 2014 2G Auction Guidelines: Rollout Obligations, Performance Guarantees
– India’s 2014 2G Auction Postponed: To Begin On 3rd February 2014
– The Lowdown: DoT’s Guidelines For 2G Spectrum Auction In January 2014