The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) has revealed that two consortia, each comprising five companies, have applied for licences to offer 4G LTE mobile services. Business Daily reports that their applications were submitted in December last year and are still under evaluation by the regulator. ‘The board made a decision sometime towards the end of last year. The decision was to have [the tier two companies] form consortiums and then we give them spectrum on trial for one year. Then if they are successful, they pay the USD25 million [spectrum fee],’ commented CA Director General Francis Wangusi, without disclosing the companies involved.
The companies are seeking spectrum in the 700MHz frequency band, which was freed up by the country’s migration from analogue to digital TV. Two blocks of 700MHz spectrum are available, with a third already allocated to Jamii Telecommunications, which launched its Faiba 4G services in December last year. Other potential options for the allocation of the 700MHz spectrum include the formation of a special purpose vehicle that will deploy and operate the network on behalf of consortium members.