Spark New Zealand has been given the all-clear to buy Craig Wireless's unused radio spectrum, expanding the country's biggest telecommunications company's ability to provide wireless services.

The Commerce Commission today cleared Spark's $9 million acquisition of the management rights to 70 megahertz of spectrum in the 2300MHz band, it said in a statement. Craig Wireless and its Woosh subsidiary put the spectrum on the block after selling its 9,000 customers to M2 Group, leaving it with two other spectrum management rights.

Spark plans to use the spectrum to increase its fixed wireless product services for customers who can't access fibre services. Last month, the Auckland-based company said it was looking at ways to expand its delivery of wireless broadband.

"Although this acquisition may lead to Craig not expanding their wireless services, access to the spectrum will enable Spark to provide a wireless alternative for rural customers and those urban customers currently unable to access fibre internet," commission chairman Mark Berry said. "As a result, this acquisition may have some pro-competitive effects in the market and improve the quality of service to customers on poor quality copper lines."


Spark shares last traded at $3.555, and have gained 5.6 per cent this year.