The news that Shaw had acquired three of Quebecor’s 700MHz spectrum licenses was exciting news for everyone involved — except maybe Canada’s Big Three.
However, it seems like Shaw’s president Jay Mehr isn’t content with the possibility of bringing broad spectrum LTE just to its current Freedom Mobile customers.
Mehr wants to go bigger.
At the TD Securities Telecom and Media Forum in Toronto — an insider’s only, no-media-allowed event — Mehr said that he wants his company “to be a powerful player in wireless with millions and millions and millions of subscribers,” according to an article by the Financial Post.
Those are lofty aspirations for sure, especially since Freedom Mobile — which was acquired by Shaw in 2015 — only services one million of the 30 million wireless subscribers in Canada.
Of course, there’s the added problem that Freedom Mobile isn’t even available across Canada. Not yet anyway.
Also attending the summit, Quebecor chief financial officer Jean-Francois Pruneau shared some thoughts on the recent acquisition deal.
“It’s obviously positive for the Canadian consumers because they will most likely benefit from lower prices in the future,” said Pruneau.
On the subject of why Quebecor would let go of its spectrum, Pruneau said it was an enemy-of-my-enemy decision that would ultimately strengthen its own business.
“Shaw’s competitors are the same as our competitors,” said Pruneau. “If we strengthen Shaw by giving them access to our spectrum, there’s an indirect benefit for us.”
Once again, Shaw’s spectrum gains are a great sign for Freedom Mobile customers and the idea of wireless diversity in Canada. But, since the company hasn’t announced what it plans to do with its new spectrum — or when — the only thing to do now is to wait and see what comes next.
Source: Financial Post