KMI licence application rejected for second time

South Korea’s telecoms regulator KCC has kicked would-be operator Korea Mobile Internet’s (KMI) licence application into touch for a second time following the latter’s failure to achieve the minimum requirements to secure the licence.

KMI was bidding to become South Korea’s fourth mobile operator but failed to impress with its business plan, which the regulator said was long on optimism but short on details.

Plans to attract at least ten million subscribers were found to be “missing details” while KMI’s belief that negotiations with other carriers on the sharing of base stations and interconnections would go smoothly was deemed positively rosy.

The Korea Herald reported that, in addition to its failure on the licensing front, KMI’s application for mobile broadband spectrum was also rejected. The KMI consortium had applied for a licence to operate on WiBRO and was planning to offer services at 20-30 per cent less than market stalwarts SK Telecom, KT and LG Uplus. This is the second time that KMI’s bid has been rejected – the first was in November 2010. Whether it decides to go for third time lucky remains to be seen.

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