Quebecor is pleased to announce that it was the successful bidder on eighteen 20 MHz licences in Industry Canada’s 2500 MHz spectrum auction. Quebecor has obtained one licence in each of the following regions: Montréal, Québec, Ottawa/Outaouais Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Trois-Rivières, Bas-du-Fleuve/Gaspésie and Pembroke, and two licences in the following regions: Chicoutimi-Jonquière, Eastern Townships, Upper Outaouaisand Abitibi.
The operating licences, acquired for $187 million, cover all of the province of Québec and the largest urban centres in the other provinces of Canada: Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver. They make it possible to reach more than 21 million people, or approximately 65% of Canada’s population.
Today’s licence acquisitions continue our strategy of buying spectrum at advantageous prices, mainly to support Videotron’s operations in Québec.
Videotron is pleased to have acquired this spectrum in Quebec, which is positioned very favourably. These newly acquired licences are a strategic asset that will help us continue our fast growth in the Québec mobile market.
For the spectrum we have acquired in English Canada, we are still analyzing various options that hold out prospects of very attractive returns, given the value of this strategic asset. We will continue patiently and carefully analyzing our options, it being understood that the financial and/or operating conditions will have to fall within acceptable parameters, added Pierre Dion.
The 2500 MHz band has technical characteristics similar to the AWS-1 and AWS-3 spectrum that Quebecor acquired in 2008 and March 2015. LTE technology is able to rely on a global ecosystem operating in the 2500 MHz spectrum band. This technology allows latest-generation and next-generation mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets to operate at optimal speed and reliability.
The 2500 MHz operating licences will complement Quebecor’s large spectrum portfolio in Québec and significantly enhance its existing spectrum portfolio in the other provinces of Canada. Quebecor now holds spectrum in the AWS-1, 700 MHz, AWS-3 and 2500 MHz bands.