Reliance Jio Infocomm Keeps All Options Open for Spectrum Auction, Including False Bidding

Reliance Jio Spectrum Bid StrategyMukesh Ambani Led Reliance Jio Infocomm has deposited Rs 4,500 crore as earnest money. This amount allows Jio to bid for almost all the spectrum bands simultaneously. It has 32000 eligibility points and points required for new entrant pan‐india (except metros and TN) in 900MHz is 17127, 8716 in 800MHz and 11519 in 2100MHz for 17 circles.

Reliance Jio’s 2015 Mega Spectrum Auction Bid Strategy
It is currently rolling out 4G network on 2300MHz but needs a solid 3G network for both voice and data fall back. We conjecture that Jio will acquire 800MHz spectrum to roll out a 3G network as availability of 900MHz is one year from now and may prove very expensive. 2100MHz is another option but it is not very efficient from coverage perspective which only sub GHz frequencies provide.

Can Reliance Jio Resort to False Bidding to jack up Prices in 900 Mhz Band ?
On the other hand it also makes sense for Reliance Jio to put pressure on incumbents to spend more on spectrum which will reduce their ability to be aggressive in the market in a data pricing war. This type of posturing will be a key element of Jio’s bidding strategy in the auction as most of the 900MHz spectrum is a must‐renewal spectrum for Idea, Vodafone, Bharti and Reliance Communication. The intense bidding to jack up prices can happen to a certain extent beyond which Reliance Jio has to be a serious contender to BUY otherwise if an incumbent withdraws, then Reliance Jio will be forced to BUY, by the very nature of design of the Auction process.

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