Spectrum Auction: Bidders Boost Total By $600 Million-Plus

With round 11 of the FCC's spectrum auction bidding slugfest just completed, the bidding total stands at $13,789,320,987, or $13.19 billion net of discounts and bidding credits.

That total is up over $600 million from round 10, when it was $13,180,000,000 and $12,580,000,000 net of discounts and bidding credits. The pace has been in the $400-$500 million range per round in previous rounds, so that is a bit of a bump in activity.

The $12.58 billion figure is the one that will eventually have to total at least $88,379,558,704 to cover the cost of paying broadcasters, paying for the auction, and paying for TV station relocations after those bidding in the auction get access to the spectrum.

If it falls short, the FCC will cut the amount of spectrum it is buying from broadcasters and then hold a second forward auction to try and cover that lesser amount.

The FCC has multiple targets down to 70 MHz to get more for the spectrum in the forward auction than it has paid in the reverse portion, which is the only way it can close the auction.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.