Telstra Andy Penn

Telstra chief Andy Penn will have breathed a small sigh of relief when the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) announced yesterday that it has finally finished plans for the spectrum auction of much heralded 5G mobile technology.

In a complex transaction to be held in late November, from which the government is hoping for a $1 billion windfall, ACMA will auction off 125MHz of spectrum in the 3.6GHz band in 350 lots across 14 regions of Australia. Penn has signaled that an early-mover advantage, backed by billions in network investment, in 5G is central to his dramatic plan to restructure the telco with his "Telstra2022" plan.