Bharti Airtel has announced that it has acquired 19,800 MHz spectrum by securing a pan-India footprint of 3.5 GHz and 26 GHz bands. In addition, the company was able to selectively bolster mid-band spectrum. This spectrum bank was secured for a total consideration of Rs 43,084 crore in the latest spectrum auction conducted by the Department of Telecom, Government of India.
Will help reduce SUC payouts
Airtel has secured 5G spectrum for 20 years in this auction. In addition, this spectrum acquisition has enabled Airtel to drastically reduce the payout towards spectrum usage charge (SUC) and eliminate the adverse SUC arbitrage compared to new entrants. Airtel claims that it now has the widest mobile broadband footprint across the country.
“Over the years, Airtel has been very astute in its competitive spectrum acquisition approach. It has assiduously accumulated the largest pool of low-and mid-band spectrum (Sub ghz/1800/2100/2300 bands) which can be used to provide the best 5G coverage while massive capacities in the 3.5 GHz and 26 GHz bands will allow Airtel to create 100X capacities at the least cost,” said the company in a statement.
Help provide competitive advantage
Airtel claimed that the spectrum acquired enables it to meet all its objectives – the best 5G experience, 100xcapacity enhancement and the most power-efficient solutions that will go towards meeting the ambitious ESG goals of the company. Even more importantly, it will help the company provide competitive advantage for years to come in delivering the lower total cost of ownership.
Airtel said that it now plans to launch 5G services in every part of the country starting with key cities. The company said that it is is convinced that its customer base will adopt 5G devices at a rapid pace in the country. It further claimed that its presence in the enterprise segment will allow for a slew of industrial use cases further strengthening its leadership in the B2B market.
Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO, Bharti Airtel said, “Airtel is delighted with the results of the 5G auction. This spectrum acquisition at the latest auction has been a part of a deliberate strategy to buy the best spectrum assets at a substantially lower relative cost compared to our competition. This will allow us to raise the bar on innovation and address the emerging needs of every discerning customer who demands the best experience in India. We are confident that we will be able to deliver the best 5G experience in India in terms of coverage, speeds and latency. This will allow us to change a lot of established paradigms for both our B2C and B2B customers. 5G technology is the revolution that can alter India’s manufacturing, services and several other sectors.”