Conclusion of 3500 Mhz Spectrum Auction - Quebecor and Videotron Take Another Step Towards Expansion Outside Quebec
MONTRÉAL, July 29, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ - True to its tradition as a Canadian telecom innovation leader, Quebecor today announced an investment of nearly $830 million in the acquisition of 294 blocks of spectrum in the 3500 MHz band across the country. More than half of the investment is concentrated in four Canadian provinces outside Québec: southern and eastern Ontario, Manitoba, Alberta and British Columbia. The strategic investment positions Québec's flagship carrier to realize its ambition of boosting healthy competition in telecom beyond the borders of Québec.
"This major investment paves the way for large-scale projects in Québec and other Canadian provinces in the coming years," says Pierre Karl Péladeau, President and CEO of Quebecor. "Our success in Québec has served Quebecers well. Today, we are taking another step towards bringing leading-edge technology and healthy competition to more Canadian consumers."
Strong presence since 1964
"In 2006, we ended the Big 3 oligopoly by offering Quebecers the services of a new wireless carrier," notes Mr. Péladeau. "With more than 1.5 million customers for our high-quality wireless services, we can say this move has been a resounding success! Now we want to offer other Canadians the opportunity to enjoy the same quality, price and customer service."
Equipped to succeed
Over the past 10 years, Quebecor's Videotron subsidiary has made its mark in Québec with its expanding mobility offering. As a result, Quebecers were able to pay 35% to 40% less for wireless services well before other Canadians. The acquisition of a significant number of blocks of 3500 MHz spectrum (for an average depth of 43 MHz) across the province reaffirms Quebecor's commitment to long-term investment in Québec.
5G roll-out well underway
"5G isn't just the technology of the future, it's the technology of the present," says Pierre Karl Péladeau. "We must be as innovative in our investing strategies as we are on the technological front, and we have been just that in this auction."
Creating a conducive environment
"We are now counting on the government to create a favourable environment to foster and maintain healthy competition. We are confident that we are the right player, the one with a real ability to break the oligopoly and put consumers across Canada back in the driver's seat."
If conditions are favourable, Quebecor plans to exercise the rights arising from recent Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission decisions to offer millions of Canadians competitive services.
For more information, see the fact sheet
Conference call for investors and audio Webcast
A conference call (English only) on Quebecor's acquisition of blocks of spectrum in the 3500 MHz band in the auction ended on July 23rd, 2021 will be held on July 30th, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. (EDT). There will be a question period reserved for financial analysts. Media will be able to participate in this conference call in listen-only mode.
To view the presentation to be discussed during the call, please visit Québecor's website at www.quebecor.com/en/investors
Anyone unable to attend the conference call will be able to listen to a recording, by calling 1-855-859-2056 (Canada - USA), access code: 3689992. The recording will be available until September 30th, 2021.
The forward-looking statements in this press release reflect Quebecor's expectations as of July 29th, 2021, and are subject to change after that date. Quebecor expressly disclaims any obligation or intention to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by applicable securities laws.
Québec-based Quebecor (TSX: QBR.A, QBR.B) employs more than 10,000 people in Canada.
A family business founded in 1950, Quebecor is committed to the community. Every year, it actively supports more than 400 organizations in the vital fields of culture, health, education, the environment and entrepreneurship.
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