Rumours in the mobile phone industry this weekend are stating that there is a chance that Hutchison Whampoa, the parent business of mobile phone company Three and the high street health and beauty retailer Superdrug , will be shutting down the mobile network in the UK. Hutchison Whampoa, or HWL as they are more commonly known, is one of the largest companies listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and is a Fortune 500 Company with over 230,000 employees. In The Sunday Times, Canning Fok, HWL’s managing director reportedly told Prime Minister David Cameron that, if the Three network cannot be assured spectrum in the approaching 4G auction, there was a possibility that the Three network would be shut down and HWL’s investment in the business would be terminated. Rumours suggest that HWL are asking for a guaranteed amount of the spectrum that is available in the bandwidth auction. HWL is the biggest Asian investor in the UK. Before you run to sell your mobile phone, read on. HWL have quashed the rumours, issuing an official statement to IT Pro which strongly denies that they will be pulling the plug on the Three network. A representative from HWL even went so far as to call the speculations ‘totally untrue’ and ‘groundless’, assuring us that, even if customers are thinking of recycling mobile phones soon, it may not be necessary. The representative went on to Say that HWL is ‘actively looking for various different investment opportunities in the UK’. Perhaps they will be entering the mobile recycling market. The 4G spectrum will be auctioned later on in the year and it remains to be seen how much of the spectrum Three will be able to secure. The 4G auction has already been held up several times and so consequently countries like America have over-taken the UK in the high speed mobile internet development. The auction is a matter of concern for other network providers particularly O2 and Vodafone, as Ofcom have decided to allow Everything Everywhere (made up of network providers Orange and T-Mobile) to recycle sections of its 1800MHz spectrum prior to the auction date. Vodafone, O2 and Three are suggesting that this would give Everything Everywhere an undue advantage. These networks are also worried that Everything Everywhere may try to postpone the bandwidth auction even further following the set up of its 4G network.