True: Licence not expensive

True: Licence not expensive

"We regard it as a risk with high gains," says Mr Suphachai. (Photo by Kitja Apichonrojarek)

The 76.30-billion-baht price True Corporation Plc is committed to paying for 10 megahertz on the 900MHz band is not high and will enable it to cut network costs by 45 billion baht, its CEO said on Monday.

"True now has a 20% market share. We set a target to increase it to 34% over the next five years. We will spend 55 billion baht expanding the 4G network nationwide in three years," CEO Suphachai Chearavanont told a news conference on Monday.

True, through its subsidiary True Move H Universal Communication, won the licence for the second lot of the spectrum at 76.30 billion baht while Jasmine International won the first lot at 75.65 billion baht.

After winning the bid, True has bandwidth of 55MHz on the 850, 900, 1800 and 2100MHz frequencies.

"This enables us to manage 2G to 4G usage efficiently, reduce risks in the long term and expand the growing True Move H customer base.

"The 900MHz is a superior band and the price is not expensive, all things considered. There are already 15 million 2G customers on the band with different operators and they will be our target. It's not an empty band like in foreign countries.

"We also have equipment and chipsets ready which will help us cut network expansion costs by almost 45 billion baht. It has high value and potential, especially in high buildings.

"We regard it as a risk with high gains," he said. 

Mr Suphachai explained True had done its homework before the auction. A consultancy company was hired to conduct a feasibility study. The price is within the limit and its budget.    

"The entry of Jasmine is a good thing as customers will have more choice. We don't view Jasmine as a competitor. It's a newcomer and will need some time to prepare infrastructure. Besides, 10MHz is not enough to serve a lot of customers," he said.

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