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Australia's TPG wins auction for Singapore's 4th telco license

Australia's TPG Telecom Ltd. made the winning spectrum auction bid to become Singapore's fourth mobile operator, the city-state's Infocomm Media Development Authority announced Dec. 14.

TPG bid S$105 million in the New Entrant Spectrum Auction, beating Singaporean internet service provider MyRepublic Ltd., and will be allocated 60 MHz of spectrum comprising 20 MHz in the 900 MHz band and 40 MHz in the 2.3 GHz band.

The new spectrum rights go into effect as early as April 2017. TPG will then be required to use the spectrum to deliver street-level 4G coverage within 18 months, and provide coverage inside road tunnels and buildings within 30 months. The company will also have 54 months after the spectrum rights begin to extend coverage to Singapore's Mass Rapid Transit underground stations and lines.

The IMDA also plans to hold a general spectrum auction in the first quarter of 2017. Bidding is open to the city-state's three existing mobile network operators, M1, Singtel and StarHub Ltd. TPG is now allowed to participate, but it will be subject to spectrum caps.

As of Dec. 14, US$1 was equivalent to 1.42 Singapore dollars.