EE sells 1800 MHz spectrum to Three

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Operator complies with merger conditions set by European Commission in 2010Everything Everywhere has agreed to sell two tranches of 1800MHz spectrum to Three in order to satisfy rules set by the European Commission.

The merger of Orange and T-Mobile in March 2010 was only approved by the European Commission on condition EE sold some of the combined holdings of 1800MHz the new company would hold.

The European Commission and Ofcom are now set to assess whether the sale meets those conditions over the next three months.

However, EE is not required to release the spectrum to Three until next year.

And EE spokesperson said: “As part of the commitments given when the European Commission approved the merger of Orange and T-Mobile in the UK in March 2010, Everything Everywhere was required to divest 2X15MHz of its 1800 MHz spectrum.

“In accordance with these commitments, Everything Everywhere has today announced an agreement with Three to transfer this 2×15 MHz of its 1800MHz spectrum to Three.

“Ofcom and the European Commission will review whether the divestment satisfies the merger commitments, and a response is expected within the next three months.”

Three CEO David Dyson said: “Acquiring this spectrum will more than double the capacity available to customers on our network.

“We have seen a huge growth in data consumption with average mobile handset customer usage now more than 1.1GB per month. Three has led the market in the significant growth of mobile data consumption and the shift to consumer use of smartphones to access the internet.

“New spectrum, supported by further committed technology spend, is a clear signal that we are committed to maintain our lead as the network built for the mobile internet.”

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