Dutch cablers looking at mobile opportunities

Dutch cable companies UPC and Ziggo as well as alternative telecom provider Tele2 are looking at participating in next year’s auction for mobile Internet.

The Dutch government will put six frequencies for mobile communications on the block, which will be able to offer fast mobile internet access using Wimax and UMTS Long Term Evolution (LTE) technologies.

A Ziggo spokesperson confirmed the company will enter the bidding process. UPC said the company is looking at the opportunity, but has not yet decided to take part in the auction.

In 2000 five UMTS licenses were issued during an auction, bringing €2.7 billion to the state, Two of the five parties that won a licence have since been bought by competitors. Telfort and Orange were acquired respectively, by KPN and T-Mobile. The Dutch Secretary of Economic Affairs, Frank Heemskerk, believes the six new licences will drive competition.