The 3G Spectrum Auctions came to an end in India with the Government playing the trump card by creating spectrum scarcity and unclear roadmap for the sector.
Bharti, Vodafone and RCOM obtained spectrum in the ‘coveted’ Mumbai and Delhi circles, while Aircel was the major surprise factor, gaining spectrum in 13 circles. Broadly, all players seem to have followed a strategy of either: 1) winning Delhi + Mumbai, along with a ‘few’ A circles and most ‘B’+’C’ circles; or 2) foregoing the expensive Delhi and Mumbai circles and gaining more geographical and population spread. We believe that 3G will serve as a churn reduction strategy in the near term, and hence it is imperative to have it in leadership circles. We believe that broadly all players have ensured spectrum in circles of strength.
What was the Strategy of Winning Bidders ?
Bharti, RCOM, Vodafone – Acquired Delhi + Mumbai + “Leadership circles” + “C” circles by paying high price with medium revenue coverage but very HIGH ARPU / Subscriber.
Idea, Aircel, Tata Docomo – Forego Delhi and Mumbai, increase population and geographical coverage with low spectrum price, Large Population Coverage and High Revenue Coverage with medium ARPU expectations.
You can download the Spreadsheet of 3G Winning Bids in India [Excel].