Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile: Here are the C-band auction results

Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile walked away with the vast majority of the C-band licenses for 5G. Dish Network spent just $2.5 million, while Comcast and Charter spent nothing.

Mike Dano, Editorial Director, 5G & Mobile Strategies

February 24, 2021

4 Min Read
Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile: Here are the C-band auction results

Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile walked away with the vast majority of the C-band licenses up for grabs in the FCC's blockbuster midband spectrum auction.

As expected, Verizon spent the most: a whopping $45.5 billion for around 3,500 total licenses. According to the financial analysts at Evercore, Verizon acquired an average of 160MHz of spectrum across the entire US. The operator announced a $25 billion loan from JPMorgan Chase Bank to help pay for the licenses.

AT&T came in second by spending $23.4 billion for 1,621 licenses. According to Evercore, AT&T netted 80MHz in 95% of the country, with the remainder split between 60MHz and 100MHz. T-Mobile, meanwhile, spent $9.3 billion for 142 licenses, which cover around 68% of the US population.

Comcast and Charter, bidding jointly, spent nothing. In fact, the companies didn't even place any bids. Dish Network spent just $2.5 million for the license covering Cheyenne, Wyoming.

As for the valuable A Block C-band licenses, which ought to be available toward the end of this year, Verizon won most of those. The operator walked away with around 60% of those licenses, according to Evercore, while AT&T walked away with around 40%. The other B and C Block licenses generally won't be available until 2023.

There were a few surprises, though. Private equity company Grain Management spent $1.3 billion, while Canopy Spectrum spent $172 million. As Light Reading previously reported, Canopy is a venture between Jennifer Fritzsche (a former Wells Fargo analyst) and Edward Moise Jr. (a longtime spectrum investor).


Bidding entity

Net Payment


Cellco Partnership



AT&T Spectrum Frontiers LLC



T-Mobile License LLC



United States Cellular Corporation


Grain Management (private equity)

NewLevel II, L.P


Canopy Spectrum

Canopy Spectrum, LLC


C Spire

Cellular South Licenses, LLC


Widespread Wireless

Widespread Wireless, LLC


Pioneer Telephone Cooperative

Pioneer Telephone Cooperative, Inc


Carolina West Wireless

Carolina West Wireless, Inc



Nex-Tech Wireless, L.L.C.


East Kentucky Network

East Kentucky Network, LLC


Horry Telephone Cooperative

Horry Telephone Cooperative, Inc


Smith Bagley

Smith Bagley, Inc



Nsight Spectrum, LLC


LICT Wireless

LICT Wireless Broadband Company, LLC


Agri-Valley Communications

Agri-Valley Communications


Union Wireless

Union Telephone Company


Dish Network

Little Bear Wireless L.L.C.


Grand River Communications, Inc.

Grand River Communications, Inc.


Granite Wireless

Granite Wireless LLC


As expected, top winners are already scheduling analyst days to discuss their new C-band strategies. T-Mobile will host a three-hour analyst day on March 11 at 2PM ET, while Verizon will host its own analyst day on March 10 at 6PM ET.

Related posts:

Mike Dano, Editorial Director, 5G & Mobile Strategies, Light Reading | @mikeddano

About the Author(s)

Mike Dano

Editorial Director, 5G & Mobile Strategies, Light Reading

Mike Dano is Light Reading's Editorial Director, 5G & Mobile Strategies. Mike can be reached at [email protected], @mikeddano or on LinkedIn.

Based in Denver, Mike has covered the wireless industry as a journalist for almost two decades, first at RCR Wireless News and then at FierceWireless and recalls once writing a story about the transition from black and white to color screens on cell phones.

Subscribe and receive the latest news from the industry.
Join 62,000+ members. Yes it's completely free.

You May Also Like