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Greek Mobile Company Licenses Up for Auction

The Hellenic National Regulator Agency EETT announced that Greek mobile operator GSM licenses may be up for grabs in 2012.
Specifically, Vodafone Hellas and Wind Hellas GSM licenses expire in 2012.  They may be subject to a renewed auction process instead of being renewed by default to the said operators.
The Greek National Regulator Agency and EETT announced recently that the expiring Vodafone Hellas and Wind Hellas GSM licenses which were awarded in the early 1990s, may be up for auction in that year.
Telestet (later TIM and presently Orascom WIND) effectively began opearions in late June 1993, while Panafon (later vodafone Panafon and eventually vodafone) in July 1993.
Wind Hellas and Vodafone Greece GSM License Renewals
Wind Hellas (then called STET Hellas) and Vodafone Hellas (then called Panafon) were the first GSM operators to provide mobile telecommunication services to the Greek market.
The NRA emphasized the fact that the awarding process will not be subject to the preferential treatment of a particular operator and will be allocated from ground zero.
The goal of the NRA process is to attract a possible new mobile player which may be difficult in these economic times.  Regardless, it fits in with the overall NRA strategic goal of widespread use of mobile broadband communication.
According to the Hellenic NRA there were about 352,000 new broadband connections between July 2009 and June 2010, bringing the total broadband connectivity in Greece to about 2.1 million.
Broadband Connectivity in Greece
From those, 1.16 million connections were supported by alternative carriers implying that 50% of the connectivity market belongs to operators other than former incumbent The Hellenic Telecommunications Organization (OTE).
In addition about 22% of voice connections belong to alternative operators which are obliged to provide OTE with substantial usage fees.
The Hellenic NRA finally estimated that there were about 3,500 licensed commissioned antennas.  This implies that a number of mobile communication antennas were still functioning  at about 5,000 in total, without proper government licenses.
The Greek NRA also underlined that fact that new regulatory measures regarding number portability are also taking effect December 1st.
More Employment and More Money
This latest move by the Greek NRA may also be related to the possible merger of mobile telecommunications operators. A new market participant may dampen market and employment impacts that emanate naturally from the efficiency results of corporate mergers, thus opening up new opportunities and expanding employment potential.
The newly generated fees from the renewed auction process will also contribute a substantial much needed sum to the government coffers.

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