Everything Everywhere (EE) confirmed it will launch an auction of spectrum in the 1800MHz frequency band, following a report in the Financial Times on Wednesday.
"I can confirm that Everything Everywhere is in discussions with external advisers to provide independent professional advice on the sale of 2x15MHz of our 1800MHz spectrum," a spokeswoman for the UK operator told FierceWireless:Europe. "We will provide more information in due course once an agreement with an adviser has been signed."
The spokeswoman added that the sale of the spectrum was a commitment made to the European Commission by France Telecom and Deutsche Telekom following the formation of Everything Everything as a joint venture between Orange UK and T-Mobile UK in 2010.
According to the Financial Times report, bankers estimate that this "rare" auction of spectrum could raise up to £400 million, which the mobile operator said would be reinvested back into the UK mobile network. The report also said the auction would take sometime next month.
The FT report cited unnamed sources that said EE is in exclusive discussions to appoint the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) to oversee the process, with the sale mandate expected to be confirmed next week.
Spectrum in the 1800MHz band is highly prized because of the role it can play in building future mobile networks, such as those based on LTE. The FT report cited one source close to the process as saying that bids could be lodged by rivals such as Vodafone, O2 and 3UK, as well as companies with an interest in mobile services such as BT, Sky, Virgin, Google and Apple.
- see this FT article
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