Overview of frequency licenses for digital local radio (DAB / DAB +)
In a letter from September 15th , 2015, the Ministry of Transport and Communications and the Ministry of Culture asked Norwegian Communications Authority (Nkom) and the Norwegian Media Authority to award concessions and frequency licenses in the Local radio DAB-Block.
Nkom and the Norwegian Media Authority have previously awarded spectrum licenses and concessions for trial operation in the The Local Radio Block (Lokalradio Blokka). These frequency licenses and network licenses (anleggs-konsesjon) expire December 31, 2016. The frequency and network licenses, which now will be awarded, are valid from 1 January 2017 to 31 December 2031.
The “Lokalradio Blokka” consists of 37 local regions which together cover the entire mainland of Norway. Lokalradio Blokka consists of frequency blocks in the frequency range 174-240 MHz where frequency blocks are allocated to local digital audio broadcasting.
Auction at 15th March 2016
Frequency licenses and concessions in the Lokalradio Blokka were announced in February 2016, where all interested parties had the opportunity to sign for the auction. The excess demand emerges for two local regions: the local region 3 (Akershus) and the local region 17 (Haugaland), which were auctioned at 15th of March 2016. The auction was conducted as an open, ascending auction over the Internet. The results of the auction were as follows:
- Twentyfirst Venture won the local region 3 (Akershus) with a bid of NOK 1000.
- FK Haugesund AS won local region 17 (Haugaland) with a bid of NOK 100 000.
In addition to the above two local regions, at April 2016 frequency licenses and concessions were also issued in 18 local regions, where there was only one qualified applicant.
More information about the auction is available at the auction page (Norwegian only).
Second allocation round May 10. 2016
After the first licensing round in the Lokalradio Blokka, there were still 17 of the 37 local regions vacant. Frequency licenses and concessions in these local regions were published again on 8th of April 2016, with the deadline of 10th of May 2016 to apply to the Norwegian Media Authority for network license and to Nkom for spectrum licenses. Applications in seven of the vacant areas were submitted within the deadline. There was only one applicant for each area and therefore no excess demand. In addition, an application was received after the deadline and awarded at the same time.
Allocation of available local regions by 10 May 2016
After the second licensing round it was still vacant 9 of the 37 local regions in the Local radio Block. They are being awarded upon applications, by the ongoing 'first come first served" principle until 31 December 2016. From 1 January 2017, the allocation will be made by the common procedure with publication.
At 13th of June 2016 was local region 2, Oslo, awarded to Bauer Media AS. At the moment, 8 local regions are vacant..
Allocation method for applications in the period from 10th of May 2016 to 31st of December 2016
Applications for available local regions delivered to the Norwegian Media Authority and Nkom after 10 May 2016, 24:00 will be assigned consecutively. Applications received at the same day, are considered to be delivered simultaneously. If an application for a spectrum license and application for network license for the same local region arrives to the authorities on different days, the date of receipt of the first application is taken into consideration. If it is filed two or more applications for the same local region on the same day, the award will be determined by auction. The auction will be held as a “first-price sealed-bid auction”, where applicants provide one sealed bid each, and where the highest bidder wins.
This arrangement will apply until 31th of December, 2016.
Allocation Method from 1th of January 2017
Applications arriving to Nkom and the Norwegian Media Authority from 1th January 2017, will be published on webpages of both government authorities. The deadline usually three weeks, will be set for other stakeholders to apply. If, after such announcement, there is only one applicant to the local region, the frequency license and network license will be awarded to this applicant. If it is filed more applications, the award will be determined by auction. The auction will be held as a "first-price sealed-bid auction », where applicants provide one sealed bid each, and where the highest bidder wins.