Analyst Predicts Quebecor Next to Sell Unused Wireless Spectrum



As consumer advocacy groups recently voiced their opposition to Rogers acquiring Shaw’s unused AWS spectrum, a new analyst report predicts Quebecor will be the next likely seller of its wireless spectrum, according to Scotia Capital analyst Jeff Fan:

“Shaw agreed to sell an option to Rogers Communications Inc. to purchase its Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) licences beginning in September 2014,” Mr. Fan wrote in his latest Converging Networks report.

“We expect Quebecor will eventually do the same with its unused licences in Toronto.”

Back in 2008, Montreal’s Quebecor purchased AWS spectrum covering the province of Quebec and a portion covering a population of 5.6 million in the City of Toronto, for a total of $554.5 million spent for 17 licenses.

Last fall, Quebecor declared it had no plans to build a wireless network in Toronto. Quebecor’s chief financial officer, Jean-François Pruneau did admit they company had received “inquiries” about their spectrum, which he believes “has increased since we acquired it.”

Fan’s report also predicts WIND Mobile will put up for sale now that the company has become completely foreign owned, with the most likely buyers being the incumbents. Just last week sources noted to The Globe and Mail Rogers was a possible candidate to acquire WIND Mobile.

The analyst believes Canada’s population is not large enough to support a fourth major wireless carrier, therefore the federal government will have no choice to approve the sale of spectrum licenses to prevent them from being unused.

[via The Globe and Mail]


  • 1His_Nibs1

    So once again the Canadian consumer is bent over and driven up the ass by ROBELUS! And don’t anyone expect Industry Canada to do a damn thing about it either. For all we know there could have been backroom discussions that took place between the new wireless entrant (Shaw) and Rogers (the incumbent) with an agreement in principle that Shaw acquire the spectrum (for future considerations, much like a hockey trade) and at a later date Rogers would “trade” for that spectrum with Shaw receiving their “future considerations” in the form of TVtropolis and other cable assets. If and I stress IF such a shady deal/discussion took place it circumvented the whole process of putting aside spectrum for new wireless entrants because the major players knew that eventually after 5 years they’d be acquiring afterall what they were told wasn’t being made available to them initially. And now we can postulate that the same situation is now unfolding re: Quebecor Media a la Shaw.

  • K3

    Anyone else wonder if this is an attempt at securing a foot hold before Apple brings out a TV with a service to compete against “traditional cable viewing”?

    If Apple eventually provides a wireless service and then media viewing options as well that might be big competition considering they would make there own hardware. (in the USA ????)